, Volume 132, Issue 2, pp 103–108

Ribonucleic acid synthesis and loss of viability in pea seed

  • C. M. Bray
  • J. Dasgupta


RNA synthesis and protein synthesis in embryonic axis tissue of viable pea (Pisum arvense L. var. N.Z. maple) seed commences during the first hour of germination. Protein synthesis in axis tissue of non-viable pea seed is barely detectable during the first 24 h after the start of imbibition. Nonviable axis tissue incorporates significant levels of [3H]uridine into RNA during this period but the level of incorporation does not increase significantly over the first 24 h of imbibition. In axis tissue of non-viable seed during the first hour of imbibition most of the [3H]uridine was incorporated into low molecular weight material migrating in advance of the 4S and 5S RNA species in polyacrylamide gels but some radioactivity was incorporated into a discrete species of RNA having a molecular weight of 2.7×106. After 24 h, non-viable axis tissue incorporates [3H]uridine into ribosomal RNA, the low molecular weight material migrating in advance of the 4S and 5S RNA peak in polyacrylamide gels and a heterogeneous RNA species of molecular weight ranging from 2.2×106 to 2.7×106. No 4S or 5S RNA synthesis is detectable after 24 h of imbibition in non-viable axis tissue. Axis tissue of viable pea seed synthesises rRNA, 4S and 5S RNA, the low molecular weight material migrating in advance of the 4S and 5S RNA peak in polyacrylamide gels and the rRNA precursor species at both periods of germination studied. Loss of viability in pea seed appears to be accompanied by the appearance of lesions in the processing of rRNA precursor species and a significant loss of RNA synthesising activity.



ribosomal RNA


trichloroacetic acid


sodium lauryl sulphate


2,5 Diphenyloxazole




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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1976

Authors and Affiliations

  • C. M. Bray
    • 1
  • J. Dasgupta
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of BiochemistryUniversity of ManchesterManchesterU.K.

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