Author(s): SantosSilva LK, SoaresCosta A, Gerald LT, Meneghin SP, HenriqueSilva F
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Abstract Plant legumains, also termed vacuolar processing enzymes (VPEs), are cysteine peptidases that play key roles in plant development, senescence, programmed cell death and defense against pathogens. Despite the increasing number of reports on plant cysteine peptidases, including VPEs, the characterization of sugarcane VPEs and their inhibition by endogenous cystatins have not yet been described. This is the first report of the biochemical characterization of a sugarcane cysteine peptidase. In this work, a recombinant sugarcane legumain was expressed in Pichia pastoris and characterized. Kinetic studies of the recombinant CaneLEG revealed that this enzyme has the main characteristics of VPEs, such as self-activation and activity under acidic pH. CaneLEG activity was strongly inhibited when incubated with sugarcane cystatin 3 (CaneCPI-3). Quantitative analysis of CaneLEG and CaneCPI-3 gene expression indicated a tissue-specific expression pattern for both genes throughout sugarcane growth, with the strong accumulation of CaneLEG transcripts throughout the internode development. Furthermore, the CaneLEG and CaneCPI-3 genes exhibited up-regulation in plantlets treated with abscisic acid (ABA). These results suggest that CaneCPI-3 may be a potential endogenous inhibitor of CaneLEG and these genes may be involved in plant stress response mediated by ABA. Also, the expression analysis provides clues for the putative involvement of CaneLEG and CaneCPI-3 in sugarcane development and phytohormone response. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.
This article was published in Plant Physiol Biochem
and referenced in Journal of Microbial & Biochemical Technology