Rapid Isolation of Arabidopsis Chloroplasts and Their Use for In Vitro Protein Import Assays

Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences, University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden.
Methods in molecular biology (Clifton, N.J.) (Impact Factor: 1.29). 01/2011; 774:281-305. DOI: 10.1007/978-1-61779-234-2_17
Source: PubMed


In vitro chloroplast protein import assays have been performed since the late 1970s, initially with plant species (e.g., pea and spinach) that readily provide an abundant source of starting material and also, subsequently, a good yield of chloroplasts for import assays. However, the sequencing of the Arabidopsis genome paved the way for an additional model system that is more amenable to genetic analysis, as a complement to the more biochemically orientated models such as pea and spinach. A prerequisite for this change was an efficient and reliable protocol for the isolation of chloroplasts for use in protein import assays, enabling biochemical approaches to be combined with the genetic potential of the plant. The method described here was developed as a rapid and low-cost procedure that can be accessed by everyone due to its simplicity. Despite its rapidity and simplicity, the method yields highly pure chloroplasts, and in addition works well with mutant plants that exhibit pale or chlorotic phenotypes. The protocol is also optimized for work with material from young plants (10-14 days old), when protein import is believed to be at its peak, and so plant growth can be conducted in vitro on Murashige and Skoog medium. The isolation method has been used not only for protein import assays, but also for proteomic analysis and further subfractionation studies.

Download full-text


Available from: Henrik Aronsson, Mar 05, 2015
  • Source
    • "In vitro transcription/translation was performed using a coupled TNT system (Promega, Madison, WI, USA) based on rabbit reticulocyte lysate containing [35S]-methionine and T7 RNA polymerase, according to the manufacturer’s instructions (Promega). Using M13 primers, the template DNA for the transcription/translation reactions was amplified by PCR from Arabidopsis cDNA clones for the precursors of Rubisco small subunit 1A and atTic22-III, according to Aronsson and Jarvis [56]. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The Tic22 protein was previously identified in pea as a putative component of the chloroplast protein import apparatus. It is a peripheral protein of the inner envelope membrane, residing in the intermembrane space. In Arabidopsis, there are two Tic22 homologues, termed atTic22-III and atTic22-IV, both of which are predicted to localize in chloroplasts. These two proteins defined clades that are conserved in all land plants, which appear to have evolved at a similar rates since their separation >400 million years ago, suggesting functional conservation. The atTIC22-IV gene was expressed several-fold more highly than atTIC22-III, but the genes exhibited similar expression profiles and were expressed throughout development. Knockout mutants lacking atTic22-IV were visibly normal, whereas those lacking atTic22-III exhibited moderate chlorosis. Double mutants lacking both isoforms were more strongly chlorotic, particularly during early development, but were viable and fertile. Double-mutant chloroplasts were small and under-developed relative to those in wild type, and displayed inefficient import of precursor proteins. The data indicate that the two Tic22 isoforms act redundantly in chloroplast protein import, and that their function is non-essential but nonetheless required for normal chloroplast biogenesis, particularly during early plant development.
    Full-text · Article · May 2013 · PLoS ONE
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Enhanced levels of singlet oxygen ((1)O(2)) in chloroplasts trigger programmed cell death. The impact of (1)O(2) production in chloroplasts was monitored first in the conditional fluorescent (flu) mutant of Arabidopsis thaliana that accumulates (1)O(2) upon a dark/light shift. The onset of (1)O(2) production is rapidly followed by a loss of chloroplast integrity that precedes the rupture of the central vacuole and the final collapse of the cell. Inactivation of the two plastid proteins EXECUTER (EX1) and EX2 in the flu mutant abrogates these responses, indicating that disintegration of chloroplasts is due to EX-dependent signaling rather than (1)O(2) directly. In flu seedlings, (1)O(2)-mediated cell death signaling operates as a default pathway that results in seedlings committing suicide. By contrast, EX-dependent signaling in the wild type induces the formation of microlesions without decreasing the viability of seedlings. (1)O(2)-mediated and EX-dependent loss of plastid integrity and cell death in these plants occurs only in cells containing fully developed chloroplasts. Our findings support an as yet unreported signaling role of (1)O(2) in the wild type exposed to mild light stress that invokes photoinhibition of photosystem II without causing photooxidative damage of the plant.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2012 · The Plant Cell
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Development of chloroplasts and other plastids depends on the import of thousands of nucleus-encoded proteins from the cytosol. Import is initiated by TOC (translocon at the outer envelope of chloroplasts) complexes in the plastid outer membrane that incorporate multiple, client-specific receptors. Modulation of import is thought to control the plastid’s proteome, developmental fate, and functions. Using forward genetics, we identified Arabidopsis SP1, which encodes a RING-type ubiquitin E3 ligase of the chloroplast outer membrane. The SP1 protein associated with TOC complexes and mediated ubiquitination of TOC components, promoting their degradation. Mutant sp1 plants performed developmental transitions that involve plastid proteome changes inefficiently, indicating a requirement for reorganization of the TOC machinery. Thus, the ubiquitin-proteasome system acts on plastids to control their development.
    No preview · Article · Nov 2012 · Science
Show more