Sucrose efflux mediated by SWEET proteins as a key step for phloem transport.
ABSTRACT Plants transport fixed carbon predominantly as sucrose, which is produced in mesophyll cells and imported into phloem cells for translocation throughout the plant. It is not known how sucrose migrates from sites of synthesis in the mesophyll to the phloem, or which cells mediate efflux into the apoplasm as a prerequisite for phloem loading by the SUT sucrose-H(+) (proton) cotransporters. Using optical sucrose sensors, we identified a subfamily of SWEET sucrose efflux transporters. AtSWEET11 and 12 localize to the plasma membrane of the phloem. Mutant plants carrying insertions in AtSWEET11 and 12 are defective in phloem loading, thus revealing a two-step mechanism of SWEET-mediated export from parenchyma cells feeding H(+)-coupled import into the sieve element-companion cell complex. We discuss how restriction of intercellular transport to the interface of adjacent phloem cells may be an effective mechanism to limit the availability of photosynthetic carbon in the leaf apoplasm in order to prevent pathogen infections.
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ABSTRACT: During grain filling in barley (Hordeum vulgare L. cv. Barke) reserves are remobilized from vegetative organs. Glumes represent the vegetative tissues closest to grains, senesce late, and are involved in the conversion of assimilates. To analyse glume development and metabolism related to grain filling, parallel transcript and metabolite profiling in glumes and endosperm were performed, showing that glume metabolism and development adjusts to changing grain demands, reflected by specific signatures of metabolite and transcript abundances. Before high endosperm sink strength is established by storage product accumulation, glumes form early, intermediary sink organs, shifting then to remobilizing and exporting source organs. Metabolic and transcriptional transitions occur at two phases: first, at the onset of endosperm filling, as a consequence of endosperm sink activity and assimilate depletion in endosperm and vascular tissues; second, at late grain filling, by developmental ageing and senescence. Regulation of and transition between phases are probably governed by specific NAC and WRKY transcription factors, and both abscisic and jasmonic acid, and are accompanied by changed expression of specific nitrogen transporters. Expression and metabolite profiling suggest glume-specific mechanisms of assimilate conversion and translocation. In summary, grain filling and endosperm sink strength coordinate phase changes in glumes via metabolic, hormonal, and transcriptional control. This study provides a comprehensive view of barley glume development and metabolism, and identifies candidate genes and associated pathways, potentially important for breeding improved grain traits. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Experimental Biology.Journal of Experimental Botany 01/2015; 66(5). DOI:10.1093/jxb/eru492 · 5.79 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Nitrogen-fixing rhizobia colonize legume roots via plant-made intracellular infection threads. Genetics has identified some genes involved but has not provided sufficient detail to understand requirements for infection thread development. Therefore, we transcriptionally profiled Medicago truncatula root hairs prior to and during the initial stages of infection. This revealed changes in the responses to plant hormones, most notably auxin, strigolactone, gibberellic acid, and brassinosteroids. Several auxin responsive genes, including the ortholog of Arabidopsis thaliana Auxin Response Factor 16, were induced at infection sites and in nodule primordia, and mutation of ARF16a reduced rhizobial infection. Associated with the induction of auxin signaling genes, there was increased expression of cell cycle genes including an A-type cyclin and a subunit of the anaphase promoting complex. There was also induction of several chalcone O-methyltransferases involved in the synthesis of an inducer of Sinorhizobium meliloti nod genes, as well as a gene associated with Nod factor degradation, suggesting both positive and negative feedback loops that control Nod factor levels during rhizobial infection. We conclude that the onset of infection is associated with reactivation of the cell cycle as well as increased expression of genes required for hormone and flavonoid biosynthesis and that the regulation of auxin signaling is necessary for initiation of rhizobial infection threads.The Plant Cell 12/2014; 26:4680-4701. DOI:10.1105/tpc.114.133496 · 9.58 Impact Factor