It is well known that chloroplasts move in response to changes in blue light intensity in order to optimize light interception, however, little is known about interspecific variation and the relative importance of this mechanism for the high light stress tolerance of plants. We characterized chloroplast movement behavior as changes in light transmission through a leaf in a variety of species ranging from ferns to monocots and eudicots and found a wide spectrum of responses. Most species exhibited a distinct accumulation response compared to the dark positioning, and all species showed a distinct avoidance response. The speed with which transmission values changed during the avoidance response was consistently faster than that during the accumulation response and speeds varied greatly between species. Plants thriving in higher growth light intensities showed greater degrees of accumulation responses and faster changes in transmission than those that prefer lower light intensities. In some species, the chloroplasts on both the adaxial and abaxial leaf surfaces changed their positioning in response to light, while in other species only the chloroplasts on one leaf side responded. No correlation was found between high light stress tolerance and the speed or degree of transmission changes, indicating that plants can compensate for slow and limited transmission changes using other photoprotective mechanisms.
Always wanted to just lean back and to enjoy science in a non written form? With the Youtube Channel of Annual Reviews this is possible. I just came accross it and found it woth sharing. There are even interesting lectures about plant toppics. http://www.youtube.com/user/annualreviews/videos
Advancement in plant research is becoming impaired by the fact that the transfer of multiple genes is difficult to achieve. Here we present a new binary vector for Agrobacterium tumefaciens mediated transformation, pHUGE-Red, in concert with a cloning strategy suited for the transfer of up to nine genes at once. This vector enables modular cloning of large DNA fragments by employing Gateway technology and contains DsRED1 as visual selection marker. Furthermore, an R/Rs inducible recombination system was included allowing subsequent removal of the selection markers in the newly generated transgenic plants. We show the successful use of pHUGE-Red by transferring eight genes essential for Medicago truncatula to establish a symbiosis with rhizobia bacteria as one 74 kb T-DNA into four non-leguminous species; strawberry, poplar, tomato and tobacco. We provide evidence that all transgenes are expressed in the root tissue of the non-legumes. Visual control during the transformation process and subsequent marker gene removal makes the pHUGE-Red vector an excellent tool for the efficient transfer of multiple genes.
CellPie is a software to help analyze and evaluate the spatial pattern of cell distribution. A pie structure is designed to visulize the distribution along each direction and for certian stepsize. The interval of directions and size of step can be customized. It also includes the cell segmentation with color channel threshold.
Yang Tang, Min Tang, Alexander Annala, Rex A. Moats, CellPie: A Spatial Pattern Assessment Tool for Cellular Images. INFORMATION-An International Interdisciplinary Journal ,ISSN: 1343-4500, to appear.
An article, which reminds us that imaging itself can influence our beloved plant cells!
"In most terrestrial plants, stomata open during the day to maximize the update of CO2 for photosynthesis, but they close at night to minimize water loss. Blue light, among several environmental factors, controls this process. Stomata response to diverse stimuli seems to be dictated by the behaviour of neighbour stomata creating leaf areas of coordinated response. Here individual stomata of Arabidopsis leaves were illuminated with a short blue-light pulse by focusing a confocal argon laser. Beautifully, the illuminated stomata open their pores, whereas their dark-adapted neighbours unexpectedly experience no change. This induction of individual stomata opening by low fluence rates of blue light was disrupted in the phototropin1 phototropin2 (phot1 phot2) double mutant, which exhibits insensitivity of stomatal movements in blue-illuminated epidermal strips. The irradiation of all epidermal cells making direct contact with a given stoma in both wild type and phot1 phot2 plants does not trigger its movement. These results unravel the stoma autonomous function in the blue light response and illuminate the implication of PHOT1 and/or PHOT2 in such response. The micro spatial heterogeneity that solar blue light suffers in partially shaded leaves under natural conditions highlights the physiological significance of the autonomous stomatal behaviour."
See and test a fairly new imaging procesing software. It is free and it has a nice intuitive user interface!
"Icy: The open source community software for bio-imaging Over the past decades the image analysis community has put substantial efforts into developing algorithms for various applications, yet their visibility often remained clustered to a handful of people,
due to lack of proper means of communication and advertising. Meanwhile, numerous experts in the biology community have been turning to image analysis to answer their questions, and yet often fail to find adapted (or affordable) tools to fit their needs. Icy provides an integrated platform that aims at bridging the gap between developers and users, by combining: a) an open-source image analysis software, offering a powerful and flexible environment for developers such as applied mathematicians to write algorithms fast and efficiently; b) a common set of tools to view and manipulate data, and a set of plugins to perform specific quantification or analysis on images; c) a community-based website centralizing all plugins and resources to facilitate their management and maximize their visibility towards users. "
This PlugIn for ImageJ is pretty amazing in helping to enhance the visibility in noisy images. I tryed it with endosome images obtained with an standard LSM and it works well. In combination with the biary function spot detection works nice.
Plant Cell. 2012 May;24(5):1746-59. Epub 2012 May 22.
Screening a cDNA library for protein-protein interactions directly in planta.
Lee LY et al.
Screening cDNA libraries for genes encoding proteins that interact with a bait protein is usually performed in yeast. However, subcellular compartmentation and protein modification may differ in yeast and plant cells, resulting in misidentification of protein partners. We used bimolecular fluorescence complementation technology to screen a plant cDNA library against a bait protein directly in plants. As proof of concept, we used the N-terminal fragment of yellow fluorescent protein- or nVenus-tagged Agrobacterium tumefaciens VirE2 and VirD2 proteins and the C-terminal extension (CTE) domain of Arabidopsis thaliana telomerase reverse transcriptase as baits to screen an Arabidopsis cDNA library encoding proteins tagged with the C-terminal fragment of yellow fluorescent protein. A library of colonies representing ∼2 × 10(5) cDNAs was arrayed in 384-well plates. DNA was isolated from pools of 10 plates, individual plates, and individual rows and columns of the plates. Sequential screening of subsets of cDNAs in Arabidopsis leaf or tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum) Bright Yellow-2 protoplasts identified single cDNA clones encoding proteins that interact with either, or both, of the Agrobacterium bait proteins, or with CTE. T-DNA insertions in the genes represented by some cDNAs revealed five novel Arabidopsis proteins important for Agrobacterium-mediated plant transformation. We also used this cDNA library to confirm VirE2-interacting proteins in orchid (Phalaenopsis amabilis) flowers. Thus, this technology can be applied to several plant species.
Generating and identifying transformants is essential for many studies of gene function. In Arabidopsis thaliana, a revolutionary protocol termed floral dip is now the most widely used transformation method. Although robust, it involves a number of relatively time-consuming and laborious steps, including manipulating an Agrobacterium tumefaciens culture and aseptic procedures for the selection of plant lines harboring antibiotic-selection markers. Furthermore, where multiple transgenes are to be introduced, achieving this by sequential transformations over multiple generations adds significantly to the time required. To circumvent these bottlenecks, we have developed three streamlined sub-protocols. First, we find that A. thaliana can be transformed by dipping directly into an A. tumefaciens culture supplemented with surfactant, eliminating the need for media exchange to a buffered solution. Next, we illustrate that A. thaliana lines possessing a double-transformation event can be readily generated by simply by floral-dipping into a mixture of two A. tumefaciens cultures harboring distinct transformation vectors. Finally, we report an alternative method of transformant selection on chromatography sand that does not require surface sterilization of seeds. These sub-protocols, which can be used separately or in combination, save time and money, and reduce the possibility of contamination.
The high temporal resolution allows small modifications of total root elongation growth to be revealed. Furthermore, with the options to investigate growth of various mutants in diverse growth conditions the present tool allows modulations in root growth kinetics due to different biotic and abiotic stimuli to be unravelled. Measurements performed on Arabidopsis thaliana wild-type (Col0) plants revealed rhythms superimposed on root elongation. Results obtained from the starchless mutant pgm, however, present a clearly modified pattern. As expected, deviation is strongest during the dark period.