HIPP26 from Arabidopsis thaliana belongs to a novel class of plant proteins, characterized by a heavy metal associated domain and an additional isoprenylation motif. It is induced during cold, salt and drought stress. The nuclear localization of HIPP26, predicted by a NLS motif, could be confirmed in onion epidermal cells overexpressing GFP-HIPP26. Experiments with modified HIPP26 indicate that the isoprenylation plays a role in the spatial distribution in the nucleus. Using promoter-GUS constructs, a tissue specific expression pattern of HIPP26 could be shown, with high expression in the vascular tissue. By a yeast-two-hybrid approach a strong interaction of HIPP26 with the zinc finger homeodomain transcription factor ATHB29, which is known to play a role in dehydration stress response could be detected. This was confirmed by GST pull-down assays. When using a modified HIPP26 lacking the two central cysteines of the heavy metal associated domain, ATHB29 was not bound in the GST pull-down assay, indicating that this structure is necessary for the interaction. Further yeast-two-hybrid analyses testing interaction of different members of the HIPP family with related zinc finger transcription factors revealed a specific interaction of ATHB29 with several HIPP proteins. A functional relationship between HIPP26 and ATHB29 is also indicated by experiments with mutants of HIPP26 showing altered expression levels of such genes known to be regulated by ATHB29.
Plant Molecular Biology – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 31, 2008
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