Characterization of a cell wall protein in various tissues

--Connie S. Bozarth and Carol Rivin

Changes in cell wall proteins have been correlated with pathogen attack and adaptation to environmental stress, as well as with normal growth and development. We have recently begun to examine changes in cell wall proteins of several lines at different stages of development.

Cell walls were isolated, extracted with 1M CaCl (Bozarth et al., Pl. Physiol. 8:261, 1987) and separated by SDS-PAGE. Western blots were probed using a polyclonal antibody produced against a 28kd soybean cell wall protein (Bozarth and Boyer, submitted). A 50kd cross reacting cell wall protein was seen in each of the varieties examined (B37, Ky21, W22, Gaspe Flint, Wilbur Knobless Flint). Unlike the soybean 28kd protein, no cross-reacting protein band was found in the soluble fraction.

The 50kd wall protein occurs in extracts from roots and shoots of embryos, but not in the scutellum. It is present in immature husk and ears. In seedling roots and shoots, the protein is found primarily in young, actively growing tissue, and there are varietal differences in the quantity of protein present. Early experiments indicate an increase in extractable 50kd protein from seedling roots and shoots which have been subjected to low water potentials.

In immature husk tissue a second cross-reactive protein of 28kd is observed. Using a 19-mer oligonucleotide synthesized on the basis of the soybean nucleotide sequence (Mason et al., J. Mol. Biol, in press), we detected two transcripts of approximately 2.5 and 1.6kb on Northern blots of RNA from immature husks.

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