Acta Biologica Hungarica

, Volume 66, Issue 1, pp 66–79 | Cite as

Localization of Ben1-Like Protein and Nuclear Degradation During Development of Metaphloem Sieve Elements in Triticum Aestivum L.

  • Jingtong Cai
  • Zhihui Zhang
  • Zhuqing ZhouEmail author
  • Wenli Yang
  • Yang Liu
  • Fangzhu Mei
  • Guangsheng Zhou
  • Likai Wang


Metaphloem sieve elements (MSEs) in the developing caryopsis of Triticum aestivum L. undergo a unique type of programmed cell death (PCD); cell organelles gradually degrade with the MSE differentiation while mature sieve elements keep active. This study focuses on locating BEN1-LIKE protein and nuclear degradation in differentiating MSEs of wheat. Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) showed that nuclei degraded in MSE development. First, the degradation started at 2–3 days after flowering (DAF). The degraded fragments were then swallowed by phagocytic vacuoles a. 4 DAF. Finally, nuclei almost completely degraded a. 5 DAF. We measured the BEN1-LIKE protein expression in differentiating MSEs. In situ hybridization showed that BEN1-LIKE mRNA was a more obvious hybridization signal at 3–4 DAF at the microscopic level. Immuno-electron microscopy further revealed that BEN1-LIKE protein was mainly localized in MSE nuclei. Furthermore, MSE differentiation was tested using a TSQ Zn2+ fluorescence probe which showed that the dynamic change of Zn2+ accumulation was similar to BEN1-LIKE protein expression. These results suggest that nucleus degradation in wheat MSEs is associated with BEN1-LIKE protein and that the expression of this protein may be regulated by Zn2+ accumulation variation.


Triticum aestivum L. MSEs immuno-electron microcoy in-situ hybridization BEN1-LIKE protein 


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© Akadémiai Kiadó, Budapest 2015

This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jingtong Cai
    • 1
  • Zhihui Zhang
    • 1
  • Zhuqing Zhou
    • 1
    Email author
  • Wenli Yang
    • 1
  • Yang Liu
    • 1
  • Fangzhu Mei
    • 2
  • Guangsheng Zhou
    • 2
  • Likai Wang
    • 1
  1. 1.Laboratory of Cell Biology, College of Life Science and TechnologyHuazhong Agricultural UniversityWuhan, HubeiChina
  2. 2.College of Plant Sciences & TechnologyHuazhong Agricultural UniversityWuhan, HubeiChina

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