Isolation and characterization of a water-stress-inducible cDNA clone from Solanum chacoense

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Journal Article
Plant Molecular Biology, 1995, 27 (3), pp. 587 - 595
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A rich source of valuable genes are wild species. Solanum chacoense Bitter with its extreme resistance to viruses, insects and drought, is a good example. In the present study, a stress gene, designated DS2, has been isolated from S. chacoense. We have shown that the expression of the gene is organ-specific being detected in leaf, stem and stolon, but not in root, tuber or flower. Treatment of detached leaves with abscisic acid (ABA), salicylic acid or methyl jasmonate resulted in only very moderate accumulation of DS2 mRNA. Thus, DS2 represents a very rare type of the water-stress-inducible genes whose signalling pathway is not primarily related to ABA. Based on DNA sequence analysis, DS2 encodes a putative protein starting with 20 amino acids homologous to the ABA- and water-stress-inducible, ripening-related (ASR) proteins of tomato continued by an insert of 155 amino acids structurally similar to certain LEAs (late embryogenesis-abundant proteins) and ending in 88 amino acids homologous again to the ASR sequences and to an unpublished partial cDNA fragment isolated from the root of rice. The N-terminal region of the DS2 protein is hydrophilic with ten 13-mer amino acid motifs and random coil structure. In contrast, the C-terminus predicts an α-helix and possesses a bipartite nuclear targeting sequence motif. These data suggest that the function of the DS2 may be the protection of the nuclear DNA from desiccation. © 1995 Kluwer Academic Publishers.
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