, Volume 28, Issue 2, pp 267-279

Characterization of a family of Arabidopsis zinc finger protein cDNAs

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Work from animal systems indicates that C2H2 zinc finger proteins play an important role in development, and this is likely true for plant systems as well. To address this question we have used the sequence information from a previously isolated Arabidopsis thaliana C2H2 zinc finger protein gene to isolate additional cDNAs belonging to this gene family. While zinc finger genes isolated from other organisms encode multiple copies of this domain, the eight cDNAs isolated from Arabidopsis each contain only a single zinc finger. Outside of the finger region there is little sequence identity or similarity, although features characteristic of transcription factors are evident. While these genes are related, hybridization analysis indicates that each of them is a unique gene in the Arabidopsis genome. Analysis of mRNA demonstrates that the genes are expressed in different but overlapping sets of organs in the plant. These results are discussed in the light of recent analysis of zinc finger genes from other plant systems.