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Plant Mol Biol. 1998 Feb;36(3):343-51.

Expression of extensin genes is dependent on the stage of the cell cycle and cell proliferation in suspension-cultured Catharanthus roseus cells.

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Department of Biological Sciences, Graduate School of Science, University of Tokyo, Japan.


To isolate cDNAs expressed at a specific phase of the cell cycle in a higher plant, we performed differential screening of a cDNA library prepared from the S-phase cells of synchronized cultures of Catharanthus roseus. Sequence analysis shows that two of the identified cDNAs, cyc15 and cyc17, encode extensins that represent a family of cell wall hydroxyproline-rich glycoproteins. Protein sequences deduced from the two cDNAs contain the characteristic pentapeptide repeat sequence, Ser-Pro-Pro-Pro-Pro, which is commonly observed in extensins. The protein sequences also share several other extensin characteristics such as the presence of a N-terminal signal peptide and a high content of Tyr and Lys residues. When C. roseus cell suspension cultures were synchronized by phosphate starvation, the mRNAs of both cyc15 and cyc17 were transiently expressed during the S and G2 phases of the cell cycle. However, significant amounts of the mRNAs also accumulated in phosphate-starved cells arrested in the G1 phase. In asynchronous cultures, both genes were expressed during the stationary phase, when cell proliferation ceased. The observed patterns of expression suggest that the extensin genes, cyc15 and cyc17, are under two types of regulation: one that depends on the stage of the cell cycle and another that is induced during the growth arrest. Thus, the products of these genes may function both during the progression through the cell cycle and in the strengthening of the cell wall after cell division.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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