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Investigating the mechanism of self-incompatibility in Papaver rhoeas and functional transfer of Papaver S-determinants to Arabidopsis thaliana

Vatovec, Sabina (2012)
Ph.D. thesis, University of Birmingham.

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Flowering plants have evolved complex genetic mechanisms of self-incompatibility (SI) to overcome the problem of self-fertilization. SI is a cell-cell recognition system where the interaction of genetically linked pollen and pistil S-determinants prevents self-fertilization.
In Papaver rhoeas, the pistil S-determinant is PrsS, a secreted protein of around 15 kDa. The pollen determinant, PrpS, encodes a novel transmembrane protein of around 20 kDa. Upon the interaction of incompatible PrsS and PrpS variants, the SI response is triggered, activating a signalling network. Rapid increases in cytosolic free calcium ([Ca\(^{2+}\)]\(_i\)) are followed by changes to the actin cytoskeleton and activation of a DEVDases, resulting in programmed cell death (PCD).

Within this thesis, three inter-related studies are described. Initially, we investigated the role of the ubiquitin-proteasomal system during SI in Papaver, the second study focused on the PrpS protein. Thirdly, we also created transgenic Arabidopsis thaliana lines expressing PrpS and PrsS, in order to investigate if the Papaver SI system might be functionally transferable to other plant species. We have demonstrated that PrpS binds the PrsS in an S-specific manner, while the functional analysis “in vitro” revealed that PrpS expressed in A.thaliana is functional and that just PrpS and PrsS are sufficient for a fully functional SI response in A.thaliana pollen.

Type of Work:Ph.D. thesis.
Supervisor(s):Franklin-Tong, Veronica
School/Faculty:Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Life & Environmental Sciences
Department:School of Biosciences
Additional Information:

Work related to this thesis is published as:

Poulter N. S., Vatovec S. and Franklin-Tong V. E. 2008.
Microtubules are a target for self-incompatibility signaling in Papaver pollen.
Plant Physiol., 146: 1358-1367

Wheeler M. J., De Graaf B. H. J., Hadjiosif N., Perry R. M., Poulter N. S., Osman K., Vatovec S., Harper A., Franklin F. C. H. and Franklin-Tong V. E. (2009)
Identification of the pollen self-incompatibility determinant in Papaver rhoeas.
Nature, 459: 992-995.

Bosch M., Poulter N. S., Vatovec S. and Franklin-Tong V. E. 2008.
Initiation of programmed cell death in self-incompatibility: role for cytoskeleton modifications and several caspase-like activities.
Molecular Plant, 1: 879-887.

Wheeler M. J., Vatovec S. and Franklin-Tong V. E. (2010)
The pollen S-determinant in Papaver: comparisons with known plant receptors and protein ligand partners.
Journal of Experimental Botany, 61: 2015-2025.

De Graaf B.H.J.*, Vatovec S.*, Juárez-Díaz J.A.*, Zou H., Chai L., Kooblall K., Forbes T., Wilkins K.A., Franklin F.C.H. and Franklin-Tong V.E. (2012)
The Papaver self-incompatibility pollen S-determinant, PrpS, functions in Arabidopsis thaliana.
Current Biology 22, 154–159, January 24, 2012
DOI 10.1016/j.cub.2011.12.006

Subjects:QK Botany
Institution:University of Birmingham
ID Code:3542
This unpublished thesis/dissertation is copyright of the author and/or third parties. The intellectual property rights of the author or third parties in respect of this work are as defined by The Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 or as modified by any successor legislation. Any use made of information contained in this thesis/dissertation must be in accordance with that legislation and must be properly acknowledged. Further distribution or reproduction in any format is prohibited without the permission of the copyright holder.
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