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Abstract Detail

Phytochemical Section

Hegebarth, Daniela [1], Busta, Lucas [2], Jetter, Reinhard [1].

The Plant Cuticle Matures: Regulation and Composition of Arabidopsis thaliana Leaf Wax during Development.

The evolution of the cuticle sealing plant surfaces against water loss was one of the crucial adaptations that enabled plants to occupy the land as a new habitat. The cuticle also allows the plant to interact with biotic and abiotic factors. Each plant species has characteristic cuticular properties based on fine-tuned chemical compositions of plant waxes. These compositions can vary greatly between organs of mature plants and even between different developmental stages of the same organs. While such changes during plant development have been indicated by crude comparisons of young and old leaves, they have not been studied in detail. Therefore, little is known how those changes are linked to the genetic machinery behind it. In our study we aimed to correlate morphological and chemical data with genetic data to study maturation of the cuticle. The chemical composition of Arabidopsis thaliana leaves was analyzed at different developmental stages, using GC-MS and GC-FID. In mature A. thaliana leaves, alkanes are by far the most abundant wax constituents, whereas in the younger leaves the major wax constituents are fatty acids. As the plant ages, the ratio of both compound classes changes gradually, showing that the cuticle matures over time. To see if the chemical changes are mirrored by similar transcriptional changes, expression levels of wax biosynthesis genes were monitored by quantitative RT-PCR. Taken together, our results provide new insight into the regulation of the wax biosynthesis machinery. Based on these findings, it will be interesting to study the development of waxes on various organs and plant species, including early land plants. The methods developed here will greatly facilitate respective large-scale wax analyses of other plant species in the future.

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1 - University of British Columbia, Botany, 6270 University Boulevard, Vancouver, British Columbia, V6T 1Z4, Canada
2 - University of British Columbia, Chemistry, 2036 Main Mall, Vancouver, British Columbia, V6T 1Z4, Canada


Presentation Type: Poster:Posters for Sections
Session: P
Location: Hall D/The Shaw Conference Centre
Date: Monday, July 27th, 2015
Time: 5:30 PM
Number: PPH001
Abstract ID:562
Candidate for Awards:None

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