Accumulation response of chloroplasts induced by mechanical stimulation in bryophyte cells.

Department of Biological Sciences, Graduate School of Science, Tokyo Metropolitan University, Minami-Osawa 1-1, Hachioji, Tokyo 192-0397, Japan.
Planta (Impact Factor: 3.38). 03/2003; 216(5):772-7. DOI: 10.1007/s00425-002-0927-x
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Chloroplast movement has been studied in many plants but mainly as a model system for light signaling. However, we recently showed that the avoidance response of chloroplasts is also induced by mechanical stimulation in fern protonemal cells. Here we report the discovery of a mechanically induced accumulation response of chloroplasts in bryophytes. When mechanical stimulation was directly applied with a capillary to a part of a cell, chloroplasts moved towards and accumulated at the pressed site within 30 min after the onset of stimulation in all species tested. The accumulation movement of chloroplasts was inhibited by Cremart but not by cytochalasin B in red-light-grown protonemata of Physcomitrella patens (Hedw.) B., S. & G. To determine the contribution of external Ca(2+) to the response, we examined the effects on the accumulation movement of gadolinium (Ga(3+)), an inhibitor of stretch-activated ion channels, and lanthanum (La(3+)), a potent inhibitor of calcium channels. Mechano-relocation of chloroplasts was abolished by these drugs, but no effects were observed on photo-relocation of chloroplasts, irrespective of light colors and intensity. These results suggest that influx of external Ca(2+) through the plasma membrane is essential for the early steps in signaling of mechano-relocation of chloroplasts whose motility system is dependent on microtubules.