Monitoring Circadian Rhythms in Arabidopsis thaliana Using Luciferase Reporter Genes
Arabidopsis thaliana is internationally adopted as the model plant species for molecular genetics. As such a huge range of resources are available for its study. Arabidopsis does not display any obvious circadian rhythms; however, rhythms in gene expression can be readily detected. For this reason the promoters of rhythmically expressed genes have been fused to the firefly luciferase gene. Using this reporter gene we have developed a number of automated techniques for monitoring luciferase activity in vivo in plants. This provides us with a robust and high-throughput assay for the circadian clock in Arabidopsis.