, Volume 58, Issue 2, pp 177-192

Comprehensive approach to genes involved in cell wall modifications in Arabidopsis thaliana

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The plant cell wall is of supermolecular architecture, and is composed of various types of heterogeneous polymers. A few thousand enzymes and structural proteins are directly involved in the construction processes, and in the functional aspects of the dynamic architecture in Arabidopsis thaliana. Most of these proteins are encoded by multigene families, and most members within each family share significant similarities in structural features, but often exhibit differing expression profiles and physiological functions. Thus, for the molecular dissection of cell wall dynamics, it is necessary to distinguish individual members within a family of proteins. As a first step towards characterizing the processes involved in cell wall dynamics, we have manufactured a gene-specific 70-mer oligo microarray that consists of 765 genes classified into 30 putative families of proteins that are implicated in the cell wall dynamics of Arabidopsis. By using this array system, we identified several sets of genes that exhibit organ preferential expression profiles. We also identified gene sets that are expressed differentially at certain specific growth stages of the Arabidopsis inflorescence stem. Our results indicate that there is a division of roles among family members within each of the putative cell wall-related gene families.