Plant Molecular Biology

, Volume 7, Issue 3, pp 155–170

Abscisic acid induction of cloned cotton late embryogenesis-abundant (Lea) mRNAs


  • Glenn A. Galau
    • Department of BotanyUniversity of Georgia
  • D. Wayne Hughes
    • Department of BotanyUniversity of Georgia
  • Leon DureIII
    • Department of BiochemistryUniversity of Georgia

DOI: 10.1007/BF00021327

Cite this article as:
Galau, G.A., Hughes, D.W. & Dure, L. Plant Mol Biol (1986) 7: 155. doi:10.1007/BF00021327


Earlier studies found that cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) cotyledons contain several mRNAs which are more abundant during late embryogenesis than in mid-embryogenesis or early germination. They are here termed ‘Late embryogenesis-abundant’ mRNAs, encoded by Lea loci. Complementary DNA clones for 18 such mRNA sequences, defined at a hybridization criterion of Tm-15°C, were identified in a mature embryo cDNA library by differential cDNA hybridization. At a lower hybridization criterion, some sequence homology was found within several of these cloned Lea mRNA sequences. Each Lea mRNA sequence comprises 0.04–1.3% of mature embryo poly(A)+ mRNA, a level ten-fold to several hundred-fold higher than in young embryo or 24 h seedling poly(A)+ mRNA. Of 18 Lea mRNA sequences examined in cultured young embryos, the level of at least 13 are specifically increased by exogenous abscisic acid (ABA), several to a level near that in normal mature embryos. However, the abundance of several of the sequences does not appear to be significantly modulated by ABA. The LEA polypeptides encoded by 10 Lea mRNA sequences were identified by hybrid-arrested translation. They include most of the late embryogenesis-abundant, ABA-inducible, polypeptides previously identified. Preliminary results suggest that many of the individual Lea mRNA sequences are transcribed from 1–3 genes in each of cotton's two subgenomes.


embryo maturationcDNA cloningGossypium hirsutumhybrid-arrest translationabscisic acidembryo culture

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© Martinus Nijhoff Publishers 1996