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Wellmer F.,Trinity College Dublin | Riechmann J.L.,Center for Research in Agricultural Genomics IRTA UAB | Riechmann J.L.,Catalan Institution for Research and Advanced Studies
Trends in Genetics | Year: 2010

The onset of flower formation is a key regulatory event during the life cycle of angiosperm plants, which marks the beginning of the reproductive phase of development. It has been shown that floral initiation is under tight genetic control, and deciphering the underlying molecular mechanisms has been a main area of interest in plant biology for the past two decades. Here, we provide an overview of the developmental and genetic processes that occur during floral initiation. We further review recent studies that have led to the genome-wide identification of target genes of key floral regulators and discuss how they have contributed to an in-depth understanding of the gene regulatory networks controlling early flower development. We focus especially on a master regulator of floral initiation in Arabidopsis thaliana APETALA1 (AP1), but also outline what is known about the AP1 network in other plant species and the evolutionary implications. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. Source

Lois L.M.,Center for Research in Agricultural Genomics IRTA UAB
Biochemical Society Transactions | Year: 2010

In the last decade, SUMOylation has emerged as an essential post-translational modification in eukaryotes. In plants, the biological role of SUMO (small ubiquitin-related modifier) has been studied through genetic approaches that together with recent biochemical studies suggest that the plant SUMOylation system has a high degree of complexity. The present review summarizes our current knowledge on the SUMOylation system in Arabidopsis, focusing on the mechanistic properties of the machinery components identified. © The Authors Journal compilation. Source

Campos-Soriano L.,Center for Research in Agricultural Genomics IRTA UAB | Segundo B.S.,Center for Research in Agricultural Genomics IRTA UAB
Plant Signaling and Behavior | Year: 2011

Mycorrhizal fungi form a mutualistic relationship with the roots of most plant species. This association provides the arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungus with sugars while the fungus improves the uptake of water and mineral nutrients in the host plant. Moreover, the induction of defense gene expression in mycorrhizal roots has been described. While salicylic acid (SA)-regulated Pathogenesis-Related (PR) proteins accumulate in rice roots colonized by the AM fungus G. intraradices, the SA content is not significantly altered in the mycorrhizal roots. Sugars, in addition to being a source of carbon for the fungus, might act as signals for the control of defense gene expression. We hypothesize that increased demands for sugars by the fungus might be responsible for the activation of the host defense responses which will then contribute to the stabilization of root colonization by the AM fungus. An excessive root colonization might change a mutualistic association into a parasitic association. © 2011 Landes Bioscience. Source

Campos-Soriano L.,Center for Research in Agricultural Genomics IRTA UAB | Gomez-Ariza J.,CNR Plant Protection Institute | Bonfante P.,CNR Plant Protection Institute | San Segundo B.,Center for Research in Agricultural Genomics IRTA UAB
BMC Plant Biology | Year: 2011

Background: The arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) symbiosis consists of a mutualistic relationship between soil fungi and roots of most plant species. This association provides the arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus with sugars while the fungus improves the uptake of water and mineral nutrients in the host plant. Then, the establishment of the arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) symbiosis requires the fine tuning of host gene expression for recognition and accommodation of the fungal symbiont. In plants, calcium plays a key role as second messenger during developmental processes and responses to environmental stimuli. Even though calcium transients are known to occur in host cells during the AM symbiosis, the decoding of the calcium signal and the molecular events downstream are only poorly understood.Results: The expression of seventeen Calcium-dependent Protein Kinase (CPK) genes representative of the four distinct phylogenetic groups of rice CPKs was monitored during the presymbiotic phase of the AM symbiosis. Among them, OsCPK18 and OsCPK4, were found to be transcriptionally activated in response to inoculation with the AM fungus Glomus intraradices. OsCPK18 and OsCPK4 gene expression was also up-regulated by fungal-produced diffusible molecules. Laser microdissection revealed expression of OsCPK18 in cortical cells, and not in epidermal cells of G. intraradices-inoculated rice roots, suggesting a preferential role of this gene in the root cortex. Moreover, a plasma membrane localization of OsCPK18 was observed by transient expression assays of green fluorescent protein-tagged OsCPK18 in onion epidermal cells. We also show that the myristoylation site of the OsCPK18 N-terminus is required for plasma membrane targeting.Conclusion: The rapid activation of OsCPK18 expression in response to AM inoculation, its expression being also induced by fungal-secreted signals, together with the observed plasma membrane localization of OsCPK18, points to a role for OsCPK18 in perception of the AM fungus. The OsCPK18 gene might be considered as a marker for the presymbiotic phase of the symbiotic process. These findings provide a better understanding of the signaling mechanisms operating during the AM symbiosis and will greatly facilitate their molecular dissection. © 2011 Campos-Soriano et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. Source

Gonzalez-Ibeas D.,CSIC - Center of Edafology and Applied Biology of the Segura | Blanca J.,Institute Conservacion Y Mejora Of La Agrodiversidad Valenciana Comav Upv | Donaire L.,CSIC - Biological Research Center | Saladie M.,Center for Research in Agricultural Genomics UAB | And 5 more authors.
BMC Genomics | Year: 2011

Background: Melon (Cucumis melo L.) is a commercially important fruit crop that is cultivated worldwide. The melon research community has recently benefited from the determination of a complete draft genome sequence and the development of associated genomic tools, which have allowed us to focus on small RNAs (sRNAs). These are short, non-coding RNAs 21-24 nucleotides in length with diverse physiological roles. In plants, they regulate gene expression and heterochromatin assembly, and control protection against virus infection. Much remains to be learned about the role of sRNAs in melon.Results: We constructed 10 sRNA libraries from two stages of developing ovaries, fruits and photosynthetic cotyledons infected with viruses, and carried out high-throughput pyrosequencing. We catalogued and analysed the melon sRNAs, resulting in the identification of 26 known miRNA families (many conserved with other species), the prediction of 84 melon-specific miRNA candidates, the identification of trans-acting siRNAs, and the identification of chloroplast, mitochondrion and transposon-derived sRNAs. In silico analysis revealed more than 400 potential targets for the conserved and novel miRNAs.Conclusion: We have discovered and analysed a large number of conserved and melon-specific sRNAs, including miRNAs and their potential target genes. This provides insight into the composition and function of the melon small RNAome, and paves the way towards an understanding of sRNA-mediated processes that regulate melon fruit development and melon-virus interactions. © 2011 Gonzalez-Ibeas et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. Source

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