Servicio de Información Comunitario sobre Investigación y Desarrollo - CORDIS

Final Activity Report Summary - EPIARABIDOPSIS (Characterization of the epigenetic nature of a gametophytic lethal mutation in Arabidopsis rhaliana)

Recent findings point to a relevant role of epigenetic phenomena in developmental issues in animals and plants. Epigenetics has been described to affect cancer, fate programming and developmental transitions. In the vegetal kingdom it has been related to embryo development, floral transition, vernalisation and transgene silencing. The analysis of two independent insertional mutants in a SWI3-like gene, in the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana, suggests that the Swi / Snf complexes are involved in regulation of transcriptional silencing of genes affecting gametophyte formation and embryo development. Our major aims were to clarify the epigenetic links of AtSWI3B with the regulation of embryo and gamete development, to characterise at the functional level other chromatin remodelling subunits and to isolate a Swi / Snf complex from Arabidopsis thaliana.

We performed the morphological and genetical characterisation of both AtSWI3B mutants, showing that the AtSWI3B disruption originates by itself an embryo lethal phenotype, and it is associated to a gametophyte defect caused by the hypothetical epigenetic modification of other loci. Partial positional mapping of the gametophytic lethality and crossings with qrt1 mutant suggest the involvement of two independent loci on the phenotype.

Different T-DNA collections have been searched for mutants in other Swi / Snf coding genes, and the effect of these mutations will be described. Finally, plants expressing Swi3-like and Bsh (Snf5-like) proteins fused to an epitope will allow the tracking of these proteins, and the purification and co-immunoprecipitation of Arabidopsis Swi / Snf complexes.

We also isolated the SNF5-like gene from pea (Pisum sativum) and described its expression dependent on ABA and desiccation.

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