Evolutionary Developmental Biology (Evo-Devo)
West, Nick , Golenberg, Edward M. .
Gene regulation involved in sexual development of dioecious cultivated spinach, Spinacia oleracea.
Although descended from hermaphroditic ancestors, Spinacia oleracea, the common cultivated spinach, is dioecious. Spinach produces unisexual flowers through the selective development of male or female floral organs rather than through abortion or arrested development of established organs. Our previous work demonstrates that the male and female flowers are molecularly distinguishable by male-specific B class floral organ identity gene expression. This sex-specific expression pattern can be modified by the plant hormone gibberellic acid (GA). Exogenous application of GA can cause female plants to express B class genes and produce male flowers. This suggests that GA is involved in regulation of B class genes and hence floral sex determination. The goal of this research is to test for interactions among GA-responsive proteins and transcriptional activators of B class floral identity genes. Our current work demonstrates that SpLFY, an activator for B class genes, interacts with SpGAI, a known transcriptional inhibitor, as well as with SpUFO, an F-box protein potentially involved in ubiquitination-mediated proteolysis. We hypothesize that the inhibitor SpGAI blocks SpLFY activation of B class floral organ identity genes, preventing development of male organs in female individuals. Further, we propose that this repression is released by GA-induced proteolysis of SpGAI mediated by SpUFO, allowing male organ development in male individuals.
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1 - Wayne State University, Biological Sciences, 5047 Gullen Mall, Detroit, MI, 48202, USA
2 - Wayne State University, Department of Biological Sciences, 5047 Gullen Mall, Wayne State University, Detroit, MI, 48202, United States
Presentation Type: Poster:Posters for Topics
Location: Battelle South/Convention Center
Date: Monday, July 9th, 2012
Time: 5:30 PM