Plant Molecular Biology

, Volume 31, Issue 3, pp 701–705 | Cite as

Characterization and expression of Metallothionein-like genes in cotton

  • Richard L. Hudspeth
  • Susan L. Hobbs
  • David M. Anderson
  • Kanniah Rajasekaran
  • John W. Grula
Short Communication

Abstract

We have characterized cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) genes encoding type 1 metallothionein-like proteins that are highly expressed in roots. Little or no expression of these genes was detected in other organs and tissues. The deduced amino acid sequences have a high degree of similarity with type 1 metallothionein-like proteins from other plants, including a central hydrophobic domain flanked by conserved cysteine-rich motifs. The type 1 metallothionein-like genes of cotton are encoded by a small gene family. One gene (MT1-A) was analyzed in detail and found to have three exons which are 52, 83 and 397 bp long, and two introns 130 and 1042 bp in length. Three of the type 1 metallothionein-like genes are organized in a tandom array, and the 5′-flanking regions of these genes share a high degree of sequence similarity. Two of the clustered genes (MT1-A andMT1-B) are expressed at about equal levels in roots and use the same transcription start site. A 640 bp promoter fragment from theMT1-A gene was sufficient to direct expression of beta-glucuronidase (GUS) in transformed cotton roots. The expression was highest near the root tip.

Key words

cotton gene expression Gossypium hirsutum metallothionein 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. 1.
    Buchanan-Wollaston V: Isolation of cDNA clones for genes that are expressed during leaf senescence inBrassica napus. Plant Physiol 105: 839–846 (1994).CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    de Framond AJ: A metallothionein-like gene from maize (Zea mays): cloning and characterization. Fed Eur Biochem Soc Lett 290: 103–106 (1991).Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    de Miranda JR, Thomas MA, Thurman DA, Tomsett AB: Metallothionein genes from the flowering plantMimulus guttatus. Fed Europ Biochem Soc Lett 260: 277–280 (1990).Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Evans IM, Gatehouse LN, Gatehouse JA, Robinson NJ, Croy RRD: A gene from pea (Pisum sativum L.) with homology to metallothionein genes. Fed Dur Biochem Soc Lett 262: 29–32 (1990).Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Hsieh H-M, Liu W-K, Huang PC: A novel stress-inducible metallothionein-like gene from rice. Plant Mol Biol 28: 381–389 (1995).PubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Jefferson RA: Assaying chimeric genes in plants: the GUS gene fusion system. Plant Mol Biol Rep 5: 387–405 (1987).Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Kawashima I, Kennedy TD, Chino M, Lane BG: Wheat Ec metallothionein genes like mammalian Zn2+ metallothionein genes are conspicuously expressed during embryogenesis. Eur J Biochem 209: 971–976 (1992).Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Okumura N, Nishizawa NK, Umehara Y, Mori S: An iron deficiency-specific cDNA from barley roots having two homologous cysteine-rich MT domains. Plant Mol Biol 17: 531–533 (1991).Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Robinson NJ, Tommey AM, Kuske C, Jackson PJ: Plant metallothioneins. Biochem J 295: 1–10 (1993).PubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Rothstein SJ, Lahners KN, Lotstein RJ, Carozzi NB, Jayne SM, Rice DA: Promoter cassettes, antibiotic-resistance genes, and vectors for plant transformation. Gene 53: 153–161 (1987).CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Schiefelbein JW, Benfey PN: The development of plant roots: new approaches to underground problems. Plant Cell 3: 1147–1154 (1991).CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Zhou J, Goldsbrough PB: Functional homologs of fungal metallothionein genes fromArabidopsis. Plant Cell 6: 875–884 (1994).CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Richard L. Hudspeth
    • 1
  • Susan L. Hobbs
    • 1
  • David M. Anderson
    • 1
  • Kanniah Rajasekaran
    • 1
  • John W. Grula
    • 1
  1. 1.PhytogenPasadenaUSA

Personalised recommendations