Direct evidence that suspensor cells have embryogenic potential that is suppressed by the embryo proper during normal embryogenesis.
ABSTRACT: The suspensor is a temporary supporting structure of proembryos. It has been proposed that suspensor cells also possess embryogenic potential, which is suppressed by the embryo as an effect of the embryo-suspensor interaction. However, data to support this hypothesis are not yet available. In this report, using an in vivo living cell laser ablation technique, we show that Arabidopsis suspensor cells can develop into embryos after removing the embryo proper. The embryo proper plays a critical role in maintaining suspensor cell identity. However, this depends on the developmental stage; after the globular embryo stage, the suspensors no longer possess the potential to develop into embryos. We also reveal that hypophysis formation may be essential for embryo differentiation. Furthermore, we show that, after removing the embryo, auxin gradually accumulates in the top suspensor cell where cell division occurs to produce an embryo. Auxin redistribution likely reprograms the fate of the suspensor cell and triggers embryogenesis in suspensor cells. Thus, we provide direct evidence that the embryo suppresses the embryogenic potential of suspensor cells.
Project description:The terminal differentiation and elimination of the embryo-suspensor is the earliest manifestation of programmed cell death (PCD) during plant ontogenesis. Molecular regulation of suspensor PCD remains poorly understood. Norway spruce (Picea abies) embryos provide a powerful model for studying embryo development because of their large size, sequenced genome, and the possibility to obtain a large number of embryos at a specific developmental stage through somatic embryogenesis. Here, we have carried out global gene expression analysis of the Norway spruce embryo-suspensor versus embryonal mass (a gymnosperm analogue of embryo proper) using RNA sequencing. We have identified that suspensors have enhanced expression of the NAC domain-containing transcription factors, XND1 and ANAC075, previously shown to be involved in the initiation of developmental PCD in Arabidiopsis. The analysis has also revealed enhanced expression of Norway spruce homologues of the known executioners of both developmental and stress-induced cell deaths, such as metacaspase 9 (MC9), cysteine endopeptidase-1 (CEP1) and ribonuclease 3 (RNS3). Interestingly, a spruce homologue of bax inhibitor-1 (PaBI-1, for Picea abies BI-1), an evolutionarily conserved cell death suppressor, was likewise up-regulated in the embryo-suspensor. Since Arabidopsis BI-1 so far has been implicated only in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER)-stress induced cell death, we investigated its role in embryogenesis and suspensor PCD using RNA interference (RNAi). We have found that PaBI-1-deficient lines formed a large number of abnormal embryos with suppressed suspensor elongation and disturbed polarity. Cytochemical staining of suspensor cells has revealed that PaBI-1 deficiency suppresses vacuolar cell death and induces necrotic type of cell death previously shown to compromise embryo development. This study demonstrates that a large number of cell-death components are conserved between angiosperms and gymnosperms and establishes a new role for BI-1 in the progression of vacuolar cell death.
Project description:KEY MESSAGE:DNA replication and continuous process of transcription during ongoing amitotic division accelerate the development of four-celled pea suspensor containing nuclei which create transient gradient of polyploidy necessary for correct embryo development. A suspensor, the link between embryo proper and surrounding tissues, differs significantly in size, morphology, and degree of polyploidy among the species. The suspensor of Pisum sativum consists of four polynuclear cells (two hemispherical and two elongated) formed in two layers. Their nuclei undergo endoreplication reaching, respectively, up to 256C and 128-256C DNA levels in its hemispherical and elongated parts. Our study shows that endoreplication first appears in the spherical part of the suspensor, and, subsequently, in the elongated one. At the next stages of suspensor development, the increase in DNA content takes place also in a similar order. Thus, despite simple construction of the suspensor, its development, supported by endoreplication, creates a certain gradient of polyploidy, which occurs in more extensive suspensors. Moreover, the rapid development of suspensor is supported both by the initiation of DNA replication prior to the completion of amitotic division of its polyploidal nuclei and by a continuous process of transcription, which is silenced by chromatin condensation throughout mitosis. Furthermore, the increase in DNA content correlates with the greater amount of transcripts; however, the multiplication of DNA copies does not entail an increase (but fluctuation) in the mean transcriptional activity of a particular nucleus during the next stages of suspensor development.
Project description:The mechanisms controlling the transcription of gene sets in specific regions of a plant embryo shortly after fertilization remain unknown. Previously, we showed that G564 mRNA, encoding a protein of unknown function, accumulates to high levels in the giant suspensor of both Scarlet Runner Bean (SRB) and Common Bean embryos, and a cis-regulatory module containing three unique DNA sequences, designated as the 10-bp, Region 2, and Fifth motifs, is required for G564 suspensor-specific transcription [Henry KF, et al. (2015) Plant Mol Biol 88:207-217; Kawashima T, et al. (2009) Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 106:3627-3632]. We tested the hypothesis that these motifs are also required for transcription of the SRB GA 20-oxidase gene, which encodes a gibberellic acid hormone biosynthesis enzyme and is coexpressed with G564 at a high level in giant bean suspensors. We used deletion and gain-of-function experiments in transgenic tobacco embryos to show that two GA 20-oxidase DNA regions are required for suspensor-specific transcription, one in the 5' UTR (+119 to +205) and another in the 5' upstream region (-341 to -316). Mutagenesis of sequences in these two regions determined that the cis-regulatory motifs required for G564 suspensor transcription are also required for GA 20-oxidase transcription within the suspensor, although the motif arrangement differs. Our results demonstrate the flexibility of motif positioning within a cis-regulatory module that activates gene transcription within giant bean suspensors and suggest that G564 and GA 20-oxidase comprise part of a suspensor gene regulatory network.
Project description:Distinct expression domains of WUSCHEL-RELATED HOMEOBOX (WOX) gene family members are involved in patterning and morphogenesis of the early embryo in Arabidopsis. However, the role of WOX genes in other taxa, including gymnosperms, remains elusive. Here, we use somatic embryos and reverse genetics for studying expression and function of PaWOX2, the corresponding homolog of AtWOX2 in the gymnosperm Picea abies (Pa; Norway spruce).The mRNA level of PaWOX2 was transiently up-regulated during early and late embryogeny. PaWOX2 mRNA in early and early late embryos was detected both in the embryonal mass and in the upper part of the suspensor. Down-regulation of PaWOX2 during development of early embryos resulted in aberrant early embryos, which failed to form a proper protoderm. Cells on the surface layer of the embryonal mass became vacuolated, and new embryogenic tissue differentiated from the embryonal mass. In addition, the aberrant early embryos lacked a distinct border between the embryonal mass, and the suspensor and the length of the suspensor cells was reduced. Down-regulation of PaWOX2 in the beginning of embryo development, before late embryos were formed, caused a significant decrease in the yield of mature embryos. On the contrary, down-regulation of PaWOX2 after late embryos were formed had no effect on further embryo development and maturation.Our data suggest an evolutionarily conserved function of WOX2 in protoderm formation early during embryo development among seed plants. In addition, PaWOX2 might exert a unique function in suspensor expansion in gymnosperms.
Project description:Land plants can reproduce sexually by developing an embryo from a fertilized egg cell. However, embryos can also be formed from other cell types in many plant species. A key question is thus how embryo identity in plants is controlled, and how this process is modified during non-zygotic embryogenesis. The Arabidopsis zygote divides to produce an embryonic lineage and an extra-embryonic suspensor. Yet, normally quiescent suspensor cells can develop a second embryo when the initial embryo is damaged, or when response to the signaling molecule auxin is locally blocked. Here we have used auxin-dependent suspensor embryogenesis as a model to determine transcriptome changes during embryonic reprogramming. We find that reprogramming is complex and accompanied by large transcriptomic changes prior to anatomic changes. This analysis revealed a strong enrichment for genes encoding components of auxin homeostasis and response among misregulated genes. Strikingly, deregulation among multiple auxin-related gene families converged upon re-establishment of cellular auxin levels or response. This suggests a remarkable degree of feedback regulation to create resilience in auxin response during embryo development. Starting from the transcriptome of auxin-deregulated embryos, we identify an auxin-dependent bHLH transcription factor network that mediates the activity of this hormone in suppressing embryo development from the suspensor. Overall design: Wild-type, bHLH49-mutant and bHLH49-overexpressing plants were grown for 4 days on MS, whereafter roots were harvested and total RNA was isolated.
Project description:We used laser capture microdissection (LCM) to capture globular scarlet runner bean embryo propers and suspensors, and profiled the transcriptomes of these two embryo regions using next-generation sequencing. Our long-term goal is to understand the region-specific differentiation processes that occur during early embryo development and how genes are activated specifically in the suspensor and embryo proper. Illumina sequencing of transcripts from laser-captured embryo proper and suspensor regions of scarlet runner bean globular stage embryos. Two biological replicates were collected for each embryo region.
Project description:KEY MESSAGE:In vitro embryo development is highly plastic; embryo cell fate can be re-established in tissue culture through different pathways. In most angiosperms, embryo development from the single-celled zygote follows a defined pattern of cell divisions in which apical (embryo proper) and basal (root and suspensor) cell fates are established within the first cell divisions. By contrast, embryos that are induced in vitro in the absence of fertilization show a less regular initial cell division pattern yet develop into histodifferentiated embryos that can be converted into seedlings. We used the Brassica napus microspore embryogenesis system, in which the male gametophyte is reprogrammed in vitro to form haploid embryos, to identify the developmental fates of the different types of embryogenic structures found in culture. Using time-lapse imaging of LEAFY COTYLEDON1-expressing cells, we show that embryogenic cell clusters with very different morphologies are able to form haploid embryos. The timing of surrounding pollen wall (exine) rupture is a major determinant of cell fate in these clusters, with early exine rupture leading to the formation of suspensor-bearing embryos and late rupture to suspensorless embryos. In addition, we show that embryogenic callus, which develops into suspensor-bearing embryos, initially expresses transcripts associated with both basal- and apical-embryo cell fates, suggesting that these two cell fates are fixed later in development. This study reveals the inherent plasticity of in vitro embryo development and identifies new pathways by which embryo cell fate can be established.
Project description:One of the major unsolved issues in plant development is understanding the regulatory networks that control the differential gene activity that is required for the specification and development of the two major embryonic regions, the embryo proper and suspensor. Historically, the giant embryo of scarlet runner bean (SRB), Phaseolus coccineus, has been used as a model system to investigate the physiological events that occur early in embryogenesis-focusing on the question of what role the suspensor region plays. A major feature distinguishing SRB embryos from those of other plants is a highly enlarged suspensor containing at least 200 cells that synthesize growth regulators required for subsequent embryonic development. Recent studies have exploited the giant size of the SRB embryo to micro-dissect the embryo proper and suspensor regions in order to use genomics-based approaches to identify regulatory genes that may be involved in controlling suspensor and embryo proper differentiation, as well as the cellular processes that may be unique to each embryonic region. Here we review the current genomics resources that make SRB embryos a compelling model system for studying the early events required to program embryo development.
Project description:Little is known about the molecular mechanisms by which the embryo proper and suspensor of plant embryos activate specific gene sets shortly after fertilization. We analyzed the upstream region of the scarlet runner bean (Phaseolus coccineus) G564 gene to understand how genes are activated specifically within the suspensor during early embryo development. Previously, we showed that the G564 upstream region has a block of tandem repeats, which contain a conserved 10-bp motif (GAAAAG(C)/(T)GAA), and that deletion of these repeats results in a loss of suspensor transcription. Here, we use gain-of-function (GOF) experiments with transgenic globular-stage tobacco embryos to show that only 1 of the 5 tandem repeats is required to drive suspensor-specific transcription. Fine-scale deletion and scanning mutagenesis experiments with 1 tandem repeat uncovered a 54-bp region that contains all of the sequences required to activate transcription in the suspensor, including the 10-bp motif (GAAAAGCGAA) and a similar 10-bp-like motif (GAAAAACGAA). Site-directed mutagenesis and GOF experiments indicated that both the 10-bp and 10-bp-like motifs are necessary, but not sufficient to activate transcription in the suspensor, and that a sequence (TTGGT) between the 10-bp and the 10-bp-like motifs is also necessary for suspensor transcription. Together, these data identify sequences that are required to activate transcription in the suspensor of a plant embryo after fertilization.
Project description:Embryogenesis is an essential process during seed development in higher plants. It has previously been shown that mutation of the Arabidopsis non-SMC element genes AtNSE1 or AtNSE3 leads to early embryo abortion, and their proteins can interact with each other directly. However, the crucial regions of these proteins in this interaction and how the proteins are cytologically involved in Arabidopsis embryo development are unknown. In this study, we found that the C-terminal including the Ring-like motif of AtNSE1 can interact with the N-terminal of AtNSE3, and only the Ring-like motif is essential for binding with three ? motifs of AtNSE2 (homologous to AtMMS21). Using genetic assays and by analysing molecular markers of cell fate decisions (STM, WOX5, and WOX8) in mutant nse1 and nse3 embryos, we found that AtNSE1 and AtNSE3 work non-redundantly in early embryo development, and that differentiation of the apical meristem and the hypophysis fails in the mutants, which have disrupted auxin transportation and responses. However, the upper cells of the suspensor in the mutants seem to have proper embryo cell identity. Cytological examination showed that cell death occurred from the early embryo stage, and that vacuolar programmed cell death and necrosis in the nse1 and nse3 mutant embryos led to ovule abortion. Thus, AtNSE1 and AtNSE3 are essential for maintaining cell viability and growth during early embryogenesis. Our results improve our understanding of the functions of SMC5/6 complex in early embryogenesis in Arabidopsis.