Planta

, Volume 239, Issue 3, pp 707–715 | Cite as

Spatial distribution of the RABBIT EARS protein and effects of its ectopic expression in Arabidopsis thaliana flowers

  • Seiji Takeda
  • Mariko Noguchi
  • Yuki Hamamura
  • Tetsuya Higashiyama
Original Article

Abstract

In many flowering plants, flowers consist of two peripheral organs, sepals and petals, occurring in outer two whorls, and two inner reproductive organs, stamens and carpels. These organs are arranged in a concentric pattern in a floral meristem, and the organ identity is established by the combined action of floral homeotic genes expressed along the whorls. Floral organ primordia arise at fixed positions in the floral meristem within each whorl. The RABBIT EARS (RBE) gene is transcribed in the petal precursor cells and primordia, and regulates petal initiation and early growth in Arabidopsis thaliana. We investigated the spatial and temporal expression pattern of a RBE protein fused to the green fluorescent protein (GFP). Expression of the GFP:RBE fusion gene under the RBE cis-regulatory genomic fragment rescues the rbe petal defects, indicating that the fusion protein is functional. The GFP signal is located to the cells where RBE is transcribed, suggesting that RBE function is cell-autonomous. Ectopic expression of GFP:RBE under the APETALA1 promoter causes the homeotic conversion of floral organs, resulting in sterile flowers. In these plants, the class B homeotic genes APETALA3 and PISTILLATA are down-regulated, suggesting that the restriction of the RBE expression to the petal precursor cells is crucial for flower development.

Keywords

APETALA1 APETALA3 Floral organ Homeotic genes Petal PISTILLATA 

Abbreviations

AP1

APETALA1

AP3

APETALA3

CAPS

Cleaved amplified polymorphic sequences

FM

Floral meristem

GFP

GREEN FLUORESCENT PROTEIN

IM

Inflorescence meristem

PI

PISTILLATA

PTL

PETAL LOSS

RBE

RABBIT EARS

SEP

SEPALLATA

TUB

TUBULIN

Notes

Acknowledgments

We thank Mitsuhiro Aida, Takehide Kato (NAIST, Japan), Tetsu Kinoshita (Nagahama Institute of Bio-Science and Technology, Japan), Mie Ichikawa, Masahiko Sato, Takashi Shiina (Kyoto Prefectural University, Japan), and Kiyotaka Okada (NIBB, Japan) for providing materials and helpful discussion, and Rebecca Horn for critical reading of the manuscript. This research was supported by Japan Advanced Plant Science Network and funded by JSPS KAKENHI grant number 22570042 (S.T.).

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

Supplementary material 1 (MPG 241359 kb)

425_2013_2010_MOESM2_ESM.tif (1.8 mb)
Supplementary material 2 (TIFF 1888 kb)

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Seiji Takeda
    • 1
    • 2
  • Mariko Noguchi
    • 1
  • Yuki Hamamura
    • 3
  • Tetsuya Higashiyama
    • 4
    • 5
  1. 1.Cell and Genome Biology, Graduate School of Life and Environmental SciencesKyoto Prefectural UniversitySoraku-gunJapan
  2. 2.Biotechnology Research DepartmentKyoto Prefectural Agriculture Forestry and Fisheries Technology CenterSoraku-gunJapan
  3. 3.Division of Biological Science, Graduate School of ScienceNagoya UniversityNagoyaJapan
  4. 4.Institute of Transformative Bio-Molecules (WPI-ITbM)Nagoya UniversityNagoyaJapan
  5. 5.JST, ERATO, Higashiyama Live-Holonics ProjectNagoya UniversityNagoyaJapan

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