Dynamic analysis of Arabidopsis seed shape reveals differences in cellulose mutants
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In a previous work, the shape of Arabidopsis seed was described as a cardioid modified by a factor of Phi. In addition, J index was defined as the similarity of the seed (in an orthogonal, bi-dimensional image) to a cardioid, thus allowing the quantitative comparison of seed shape in seeds of varieties and mutants at different stages of development. Here, J index is used for modeling changes in seed morphology during the dynamic process of seed imbibition before germination. The analysis was carried out by means of a general linear model with two fixed factors (genotype and time) applied to two Arabidopsis varieties: Columbia and Wassilewskija and two mutants in cellulose synthesis: prc1-1 (CESA6 in Columbia) and kor1-1 (in Wassilewskija). Equations representing the changes in seed form during imbibition are given. The analysis of changes in seed shape by this procedure provides (1) a quantitative method to record changes in seed shape and to compare between genotypes or treatments showing the time points with maximum differences, and (2) the observation of remarkable differences between wild-type seeds and mutants in cellulose biosynthesis, indicating new phenotypic characteristics previously unknown in the latter. While wild-type seeds increase their J index values during imbibition, in the cellulose mutants J index values decrease. In addition, shape comparisons were done with other mutants. Seeds of ga1-1 mutants behave like cellulose mutants, whereas different ethylene mutants present varied responses. Quantitative analysis of seed morphology is a new basis for the record of differences between wild-type and mutants as well as for phenotypic characterization.
KeywordsArabidopsis Cardioid Cellulose mutants Imbibition Seed Shape
We thank Samantha Vernhettes for kindly providing us with seeds of wild type Arabidopsis varieties and mutants.
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
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