Author(s): Hadwiger LA, Jafri A, von Broembsen S, Eddy R
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Abstract Increases in phenylalanine ammonia lyase activity and pisatin synthesis were induced in excised pea pods (a) by basic polypeptides such as protamine, histone, lysozyme, cytochrome c, and ribonuclease; (b) by the polyamines spermine, spermidine, cadaverine, and putrescine, and (c) by the synthetic oligopeptides poly-l-lysine, poly-dl-ornithine, and poly-l-arginine.Poly-l-lysine (1 milligram per milliliter, molecular weight 7,200) was utilized as a model inducer of pisatin and phenylalanine ammonia lyase. The poly-l-lysine-induced responses could be inhibited by adding the RNA synthesis inhibitors cordycepin or alpha-amanitin to the pods prior to or at the time of inducer application. Cordycepin added 1.5 hours after inducer no longer completely inhibited induction. The application of poly-l-lysine was shown to characteristically change the rate of RNA synthesis within 30 minutes. Ultrastructural changes in pea nuclei were detected within 3 hours, and gross changes in nuclear morphology were apparent at 14 hours after inducer application. The physical appearance of uranyl acetate-stained chromatin isolated from poly-l-lysine 2 hours after inducer application differed from that of water-treated tissues. The template properties of chromatin extracted from pods 3 hours after inducer application were consistently superior to control chromatin when assayed with Escherichia coli RNA polymerase (without sigma factor). Chromatin from poly-l-lysine-induced tissue also bound 49\% more actinomycin D-(3)H.The DNA-complexing properties of inducer compounds and the induced changes in the template and dye-binding properties of pea chromatin formed the basis for a proposed mode of action for phytoalexin induction.
This article was published in Plant Physiol
and referenced in Journal of Molecular and Genetic Medicine