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JPSS Jülich Plant Science Seminar Series:
Dr. Helen North, INRA Versailles France

10.12.2013 13:00 Uhr
Forschungszentrum Jülich, Gebäude 06.2 IBG-2, Seminarraum 406, 2.Stock

Exploiting natural variation in Arabidopsis to understand seed mucilage function and polysaccharide metabolism

During Arabidopsis seed development the epidermal cells of the seed coat undergo a complex differentiation process and accumulate cell wall polysaccharides in large amounts in the apoplasm. These are released on imbibition to form mucilage that surrounds the seed. In Arabidopsis the mucilage has water-soluble and adherent layers, which differ in their composition and structural properties. The function of mucilage remains conjectural, although numerous propositions have been made. Due to the accessibility of the polysaccharides, the epidermal cells of the seed coat are becoming a popular model for the identification and functional analysis of genes involved in polysaccharide metabolism, generally using collections of induced mutants. As an alternative, we have exploited naturally occurring mutants of Arabidopsis and identified a b–galactosidase and a pectin methylesterase inhibitor involved in pectin maturation (Macquet et al., 2007; Saez-Aguayo et al., 2013). We have also examined the extent of natural variation in soluble mucilage characteristics with the aim of linking these to particular habitats and potential mucilage functions. These studies have also enabled us to identify accession outliers with extreme soluble mucilage characteristics that are likely to be affected in novel genes

Macquet et al. (2007) Plant Cell, 19: 3990-4006

Saez-Aguayo et al. (2013) Plant Cell, 25: 308-323.

Contact: Catalin Voiniciuc