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Plant & cell physiology

Is microtubule disassembly a trigger for cold acclimation?


PMID 12881495

Abstract

Cold acclimation was followed in three cultivars of winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) that differ in freezing tolerance, using root growth as the indicator. During acclimation (followed through 7 d at 4 degrees C), growth rate progressively recovered. The recovery was fast in the tolerant, slow in the sensitive cultivars. The development of freezing tolerance was followed by a challenging cold shock administered after various time intervals of acclimation. Acclimation proceeded faster in the tolerant cultivars. Microtubules were monitored during the acclimation period. A rapid, but transient partial disassembly in the tolerant cultivars preceded the formation of cold-stable microtubules and the recovery of growth rate. In contrast, this transient disassembly was absent in the sensitive cultivar. When a transient disassembly was artificially generated by a pulse-treatment with the antimicrotubular herbicide pronamide, this could induce freezing tolerance. The appearance of cold-stable microtubules was accompanied by a reduced abundance of type TUA1/2 alpha-tubulin isotypes. These findings are discussed with respect to a role of microtubule disassembly in the sensing of low-temperature stress.

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