The Antirrhinum S-locus F-box gene, AhSLF-S 2, has been shown to determine the pollen function of S-RNase-mediated self-incompatibility (SI). Its initial identification led to the discovery of a large family of plant-specific F-box proteins, named the SLF (S-Locus F-box) family, including members from species with or without S-RNase SI system. To investigate the evolution and function of its family members in Arabidopsis, we first identified 92 Arabidopsis F-box proteins related to AhSLF-S2, referred to as AtSFL (S-locus F-box-like) in this report. Phylogenetic analyses with family members from several plant species revealed that they could be classified into five subgroups, and the SLF genes appeared to have had a monophyletic origin. Yeast two-hybrid analyses showed that most AtSFL proteins could interact with one or more ASK (Arabidopsis Skp1-like) proteins, a component of the SCF (Skp1/Cullin or CDC53/F-box) complex, suggesting that AtSFLs may function in the process of ubiquitin/26S proteasome-mediated proteolysis. Transcript analysis found that most of AtSFL genes are expressed ubiquitously and only three of them (AtSFL61, 79 and 85) displayed a tissue-specific pattern. In consistent, phenotypic observations for T-DNA insertion lines of 37 AtSFL genes revealed that most of them are functionally redundant, but inactivation of two AtSFL genes (AtSFL 61 and 70) appears to have caused developmental defects in embryo or female gametophyte. Our results show that a diversified expression and functional pattern are associated with AtSFL genes, indicating that they play important roles in various biological processes in Arabidopsis.
Plant Molecular Biology – Springer Journals
Published: Apr 7, 2005
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