The hexose transporter 2 gene (Hxt2) from Saccharomyces cerevisiae was expressed in Arabidopsis thaliana under control of the 35S promoter. Several independent transgenic lines were selected after confirming single gene insertion by southern blot analysis in the T4 generation. Northern blots revealed the presence of heterologous transcript. Radiolabeling experiments revealed an increased rate of incorporation of the non-metabolizable analog 3-O-methyl-[U-14C]-glucose. This confirmed that the yeast Hxt2 transporter was functional in Arabidopsis. No phenotypic changes at the vegetative and reproductive stages could be detected in the transgenic lines when compared to wild type plants. Shortly after germination some differences in development and glucose signaling were observed. Transgenic seedlings cultivated in liquid medium or on solid agar plates were able to grow with 3% glucose (producing bigger plants and longer roots), while development of wild type plants was delayed under those conditions. Metabolite analysis revealed that the Hxt2 transgenic lines had higher rates of sugar utilization. Transcriptional profiling showed that particular genes were significantly up- or down-regulated. Some transcription factors like At1g27000 were repressed, while others, such as At3g58780, were induced. The mRNA from classical sugar signaling genes such as STP1, Hxk1, and ApL3 behaved similarly in transgenic lines and wild type lines. Results suggest that the Hxt2 transgene altered some developmental processes related to the perception of high carbon availability after the germination stage. We conclude that the developmental arrest of wild type plants at 3% glucose not only depends on Hxk1 as the only sugar sensor but might also be influenced by the route of hexose transport across the plasma membrane.
Plant Molecular Biology – Springer Journals
Published: Jan 27, 2010
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