bims-plasge Biomed News
on Plastid genes
Issue of 2022‒07‒24
three papers selected by
Vera S. Bogdanova
Institute of Cytology and Genetics, Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences

  1. Sci Rep. 2022 Jul 21. 12(1): 12492
      Gene expression in plant mitochondria is mainly regulated by nuclear-encoded proteins on a post-transcriptional level. Pentatricopeptide repeat (PPR) proteins play a major role by participating in mRNA stability, splicing, RNA editing, and translation initiation. PPR proteins were also shown to be part of the mitochondrial ribosome (rPPR proteins), which may act as regulators of gene expression in plants. In this study, we focus on a mitochondrial-located P-type PPR protein-DWEORG1-from Arabidopsis thaliana. Its abundance in mitochondria is high, and it has a similar expression pattern as rPPR proteins. Mutant dweorg1 plants exhibit a slow-growth phenotype. Using ribosome profiling, a decrease in translation efficiency for cox2, rps4, rpl5, and ccmFN2 was observed in dweorg1 mutants, correlating with a reduced accumulation of the Cox2 protein in these plants. In addition, the mitochondrial rRNA levels are significantly reduced in dweorg1 compared with the wild type. DWEORG1 co-migrates with the ribosomal proteins Rps4 and Rpl16 in sucrose gradients, suggesting an association of DWEORG1 with the mitoribosome. Collectively, this data suggests that DWEORG1 encodes a novel rPPR protein that is needed for the translation of cox2, rps4, rpl5, and ccmFN2 and provides a stabilizing function for mitochondrial ribosomes.
  2. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2022 Jul 26. 119(30): e2204187119
      Mitochondrial and plastid functions depend on coordinated expression of proteins encoded by genomic compartments that have radical differences in copy number of organellar and nuclear genomes. In polyploids, doubling of the nuclear genome may add challenges to maintaining balanced expression of proteins involved in cytonuclear interactions. Here, we use ribo-depleted RNA sequencing (RNA-seq) to analyze transcript abundance for nuclear and organellar genomes in leaf tissue from four different polyploid angiosperms and their close diploid relatives. We find that even though plastid genomes contain <1% of the number of genes in the nuclear genome, they generate the majority (69.9 to 82.3%) of messenger RNA (mRNA) transcripts in the cell. Mitochondrial genes are responsible for a much smaller percentage (1.3 to 3.7%) of the leaf mRNA pool but still produce much higher transcript abundances per gene compared to nuclear genome. Nuclear genes encoding proteins that functionally interact with mitochondrial or plastid gene products exhibit mRNA expression levels that are consistently more than 10-fold lower than their organellar counterparts, indicating an extreme cytonuclear imbalance at the RNA level despite the predominance of equimolar interactions at the protein level. Nevertheless, interacting nuclear and organellar genes show strongly correlated transcript abundances across functional categories, suggesting that the observed mRNA stoichiometric imbalance does not preclude coordination of cytonuclear expression. Finally, we show that nuclear genome doubling does not alter the cytonuclear expression ratios observed in diploid relatives in consistent or systematic ways, indicating that successful polyploid plants are able to compensate for cytonuclear perturbations associated with nuclear genome doubling.
    Keywords:  chloroplast; cytonuclear; gene balance; mitochondrial; polyploidy
  3. BMC Plant Biol. 2022 Jul 19. 22(1): 352
      BACKGROUND: Pentatricopeptide repeat (PPR) proteins play an essential role in the post-transcriptional regulation of genes in plastid genomes. Although important advances have been made in understanding the functions of these genes, there is little information available on chloroplastic PPR genes in non-model plants and less in plants without chloroplasts. In the present study, a comprehensive and multifactorial bioinformatic strategy was applied to search for putative PPR genes in the foliar and meristematic tissues of green and albino plantlets of the non-model plant Agave angustifolia Haw.RESULTS: A total of 1581 PPR transcripts were identified, of which 282 were chloroplastic. Leaf tissue in the albino plantlets showed the highest levels of expression of chloroplastic PPRs. The search for hypothetical targets of 12 PPR sequences in the chloroplast genes of A. angustifolia revealed their action on transcripts related to ribosomes and translation, photosystems, ATP synthase, plastid-encoded RNA polymerase and RuBisCO.
    CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest that the expression of PPR genes depends on the state of cell differentiation and plastid development. In the case of the albino leaf tissue, which lacks functional chloroplasts, it is possible that anterograde and retrograde signaling networks are severely compromised, leading to a compensatory anterograde response characterized by an increase in the expression of PPR genes.
    Keywords:  Agave; Chloroplast; Retro-anterograde communication