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Storage and mobilization as antagonistic functional constraints on seed storage globulin evolution

A. D. Shutov, H. Bäumlein, F. R. Blattner and K. Müntz
Journal of Experimental Botany
Vol. 54, No. 388 (July 2003), pp. 1645-1654
Published by: Oxford University Press
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/23697950
Page Count: 10
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Storage and mobilization as antagonistic functional constraints on seed storage globulin evolution
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Abstract

When seeds germinate nearly all the proteins are degraded in senescing storage tissue cells. All these proteins act as amino acid reserves which are mobilized to nourish the seedling. Nevertheless, the major amount of the seeds' protein reserve consists of a few enzymatically inactive, abundant, genuine storage proteins. In their metabolism the conflicting processes of biosynthesis, protein turnover and breakdown, are temporally separated. No degradation of correctly formed storage proteins was observed at the time of synthesis and accumulation during seed maturation. Breakdown takes place after a (long) period of rest when seeds germinate and seedlings start growing. At that time genuine storage proteins are no longer synthesized. Genuine storage proteins have evolved structural features permitting controlled temporal patterns of protection and proteolysis. The acquisition of inserted sequence stretches as sites accessible to limited proteolysis played a key role in the evolution of this control system and happened in coevolution of genuine storage proteins with specific proteinases. This can be deduced from the results of current research on the mechanisms of limited and unlimited proteolysis of storage globulins and on storage globulin evolution. The evolved system of controlled structure—function interplay between storage globulins and proteinases is part of a syndrome that, in addition, comprises differential compartmentation and gene expression of storage proteins and proteinases for controlling the total spatial and temporal patterns of globulin storage and mobilization in maturing and germinating seeds.

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