, Volume 36, Issue 3, pp 303-311
Date: 07 Jan 2014

Identification of a pollen-specific gene, SlCRK1 (RFK2) in tomato

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Plant receptor-like kinases (RLKs) are proteins that are involved in the regulation of development, hormone signaling, abiotic, and biotic stress responses. It has been suggested that cysteine-rich receptor-like kinases (CRKs), which are one of the largest RLK groups, is significant in pathogen defense and programmed cell death. The CRK1 gene is isolated and characterized from tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.). The SlCRK1 has two C-X8-C-X2-C motifs: a trans-membrane region and a kinase domain similar to other CRKs. The semi-quantitative RT-PCR exhibits the specific expression of SlCRK1 in the flower, but not in the root, leaf, seed, and fruit of the tomato. In addition, SlCRK1 exhibits pollen-specific expression in the floral organ. SlCRK1 has pollen-specific cis-acting elements in the promoter region, and its promoter has pollen-specific activity in the homozygous transgenic plants of tomato and Arabidopsis as confirmed through histochemical GUS assays. Moreover, the expression of SlCRK1 is not detected via stress treatment or hormone treatment. In this study, SlCRK1 from tomato is characterized and its promoter can be useful in developing transgenic plants with foreign genes that should be expressed in pollens.