Differential expression patterns of two new primary cell wall-related cellulose synthase cDNAs, PtrCesA6 and PtrCesA7 from aspen trees

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Based on elegant molecular genetic analyses, distinct classes of cellulose synthase (CesA) genes have been associated with either primary or secondary cell wall development in Arabidopsis. Here, we report on cloning of two new CesA cDNAs, PtrCesA6 and PtrCesA7 involved in the primary cell wall development in aspen (Populus tremuloides) trees. Both these distinct cDNAs, isolated from a developing xylem cDNA library, share only 60-67% identities with each other as well as with five other previously known aspen CesA cDNAs. Interestingly, PtrCESA6 from aspen, a dicot species, shares maximum identity of 81-84% with three CESA isoforms from maize and rice, two monocot species. On the other hand, PtrCESA7 shares a maximum identity of 86% with AtCESA2, a primary wall-related CesA member from Arabidopsis, a dicot species. Gene expression analyses by reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reactions (RT-PCRs) suggested that both these genes are expressed at a low level in all aspen tissues examined but PtrCesA7 is expressed at a higher level than PtrCesA6. While corroborating these results, in situ mRNA hybridization studies using three different aspen organs also suggested that PtrCesA6 and PtrCesA7 genes are expressed in all expanding cells depositing primary cell wall but PtrCesA7 is expressed at a higher level than PtrCesA6. These differential gene expression profiles suggest that each of these CesAs may be playing a specific role during primary cell wall development in aspen trees. Isolation of two primary wall related CesA genes from xylem tissues also suggest their importance during xylem development, which is traditionally considered to be enriched in secondary cell wall forming cells of economical significance. © 2004 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

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