Cold storage of potato tubers at 4 °C is associated with the accumulation of several cold-induced transcripts. By using a previously characterized cDNA (CI7) as probe, we isolated and sequenced the corresponding ci7 gene. The putative promoter of ci7 contains sequence elements that have been shown to mediate expression of stress-responsive genes of Arabidopsis thaliana. CI7 transcripts were differentially induced in response to cold, drought, high salt or exogenous ABA treatment in potato tubers and leaves. Whereas accumulation of CI7 transcript during cold storage occurred within days, induction of CI7 transcript in response to drought, ABA and salt occurred rapidly within few hours. In tubers, accumulation of CI7 protein in response to abiotic stresses and ABA was small when compared to transcript levels. In leaves, the CI7 protein was undetectable after all treatments tested. 3 kb of the 5'-flanking ci7 promoter region were fused to the GUS reporter gene and introduced into S. tuberosum plants. The analysis of tubers of independent transgenic lines did not reveal significant induction of enzymatic GUS activity in response to low temperature. When RNA gel blotting was used to analyze the level of induction of the GUS gene driven by the ci7 promoter, the heterologous GUS fusion was, however, strongly responsive to low temperature. Nuclear run-on transcription studies of the ci7 gene, in comparison with RNA gel blot analyses of the transgenic plants, indicated that most of the temperature-regulated expression of the ci7 gene in tubers may be accounted for by post-transcriptional control mechanisms.
Plant Molecular Biology – Springer Journals
Published: Sep 29, 2004
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