bims-plasge Biomed News
on Plastid genes
Issue of 2019‒09‒08
two papers selected by
Vera S. Bogdanova
Institute of Cytology and Genetics, Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences

  1. Plant Cell Rep. 2019 Sep 04.
      KEY MESSAGE: WSL8 encoding a deoxyribonucleoside kinase (dNK) that catalyzes the first step in the salvage pathway of nucleotide synthesis plays an important role in early chloroplast development in rice. The chloroplast is an organelle that converts light energy into chemical energy; therefore, the normal differentiation and development of chloroplast are pivotal for plant survival. Deoxyribonucleoside kinases (dNKs) play an important role in the salvage pathway of nucleotides. However, the relationship between dNKs and chloroplast development remains elusive. Here, we identified a white stripe leaf 8 (wsl8) mutant that exhibited a white stripe leaf phenotype at seedling stage (before the four-leaf stage). The mutant showed a significantly lower chlorophyll content and defective chloroplast morphology, whereas higher reactive oxygen species than the wild type. As the leaf developed, the chlorotic mutant plants gradually turned green, accompanied by the restoration in chlorophyll accumulation and chloroplast ultrastructure. Map-based cloning revealed that WSL8 encodes a dNK on chromosome 5. Compared with the wild type, a C-to-G single base substitution occurred in the wsl8 mutant, which caused a missense mutation (Leu 349 Val) and significantly reduced dNK enzyme activity. A subcellular localization experiment showed the WSL8 protein was targeted in the chloroplast and its transcripts were expressed in various tissues, with more abundance in young leaves and nodes. Ribosome and RNA-sequencing analysis indicated that some components and genes related to ribosome biosynthesis were down-regulated in the mutant. An exogenous feeding experiment suggested that the WSL8 performed the enzymic activity of thymidine kinase, especially functioning in the salvage synthesis of thymidine monophosphate. Our results highlight that the salvage pathway mediated by the dNK is essential for early chloroplast development in rice.
    Keywords:  Chloroplast; Deoxyribonucleoside kinase (dNK); Rice (Oryza sativa L.); Salvage pathway; White stripe leaf
  2. Plant Physiol. 2019 Sep 05. pii: pp.00841.2019. [Epub ahead of print]
      Chloroplast size varies considerably in nature, but the underlying mechanisms are unknown. By exploiting a near-isogenic line population derived from a cross between the Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) accessions Cape Verde Islands (Cvi-1), which has larger chloroplasts, and Landsberg erecta (Ler-0) with smaller chloroplasts, we determined that the large-chloroplast phenotype in Cvi-1 is associated with allelic variation in the gene encoding the chloroplast-division protein FtsZ2-2, a tubulin-related cytoskeletal component of the contractile FtsZ ring inside chloroplasts. Sequencing revealed that the Cvi-1 FtsZ2-2 allele encodes a C-terminally truncated protein lacking a region required for FtsZ2-2 interaction with inner envelope proteins, and functional complementation experiments in a Columbia-0 ftsZ2-2 null mutant confirmed this allele as causal for the increased chloroplast size in Cvi-1. Comparison of FtsZ2-2 coding sequences in the 1001 Genomes database showed that the Cvi-1 allele is rare and identified additional rare loss-of-function alleles, including a natural null allele, in three other accessions, all of which had enlarged-chloroplast phenotypes. The ratio of nonsynonymous to synonymous substitutions was higher among the FtsZ2-2 genes than among the two other FtsZ family members in Arabidopsis, FtsZ2-1, a close paralog of FtsZ2-2, and the functionally distinct FtsZ1-1, indicating more relaxed constraint on the FtsZ2-2 than FtsZ2-1 or FtsZ1-1 coding sequences. Our results establish that allelic variation in FtsZ2-2 contributes to natural variation in chloroplast size in Arabidopsis and also demonstrate that natural variation in Arabidopsis can be used to decipher the genetic basis of differences in fundamental cell biological traits, such as organelle size.