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Differential gene expression during somatic embryogenesis in the maize (Zea mays L.) inbred line H99

Sun, Lifang, Wu, Ying, Su, Shengzhong, Liu, Hongkui, Yang, Guang, Li, Shipeng, Shan, Xiaohui, Yuan, Yaping
Plant cell, tissue, and organ culture 2012 v.109 no.2 pp. 271-286
RNA, Zea mays, breeding, cell division, complementary DNA, corn, cultivars, energy conversion, enzyme activity, gene expression, genes, inbred lines, kinesin, nucleotide sequences, plant propagation, protein phosphorylation, sequence analysis, signal transduction, somatic cells, somatic embryogenesis, tyrosine
Somatic embryogenesis is a complex developmental process that offers great potential for plant propagation. Although many studies have shown that the generation of embryonic cells from somatic cells is accompanied by the synthesis of RNA and DNA and by elevated enzymatic activity, the mechanism of the onset of somatic embryogenesis is not well understood. cDNA-amplified fragment length polymorphism analysis was used to evaluate the gene expression pattern in embryogenic and non-embryogenic of the inbred maize line H99 during the process of embryogenesis. We identified a total of 101 candidate genes associated with the formation of maize embryonic calli. Based on the sequence analysis, these genes included 53 functionally-annotated TDFs involved in such processes as energy production and conversion, cell division and signal transduction, suggesting that somatic embryogenesis undergoes a complex process. Two full-length cDNA sequences, encoding KHCP (kinesin heavy chain like protein) and TypA (tyrosine phosphorylation protein A), and partial sequences, encoding ARF-GEP (guanine nucleotide-exchange protein of ADP ribosylation factor) homologs, were isolated from embryonic calli of maize and named ZmKHCP, ZmTypA and ZmARF-GEP, respectively. Finally, the real-time qRT-PCR results showed that the expression levels of the three genes were significantly higher in the embryonic calli than the non-embryonic calli. Thus, this study provides important clues to understanding the induction of somatic embryogenesis in maize. The candidate genes associated with the formation of embryonic calli may offer additional insights into the mechanism of somatic embryogenesis, and further research on the three candidate genes may determine their role in increasing the rate of induction of embryonic calli, which may aid in the development of cultivars through transgenic breeding.