Journal Article

Spatial regulation of cell-wall structure in response to heavy metal stress: cadmium-induced alteration of the methyl-esterification pattern of homogalacturonans

Olfa Douchiche, Azeddine Driouich and Claudine Morvan

in Annals of Botany

Published on behalf of The Annals of Botany Company

Volume 105, issue 3, pages 481-491
Published in print March 2010 | ISSN: 0305-7364
Published online January 2010 | e-ISSN: 1095-8290 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/aob/mcp306
Spatial regulation of cell-wall structure in response to heavy metal stress: cadmium-induced alteration of the methyl-esterification pattern of homogalacturonans

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Background and Aims

In flax hypocotyls, cadmium-induced reorientation of growth coincides with marked changes in homogalacturonan (HGA) epitopes that were recognized by JIM7 and JIM5 antibodies in the external tangential wall of the epidermis. In the present study, LM7 and 2F4 monoclonal antibodies were used, in addition to JIM5 and JIM7, to extend the investigation on the methyl-esterification pattern of HGA within various domains of the cortical tissues, including the cortical parenchyma where cell cohesion is crucial.

Methods

The PATAg (periodic acid thiocarbohydrazide–silver proteinate) test was applied to ultrathin sections so that the polysaccharides could be visualized and the ultrastructure studied. The monoclonal LM7, JIM5 and JIM7 antibodies that recognize differently methyl-esterified HGA were used. The monoclonal 2F4 antibody that is specific to a particular polygalacturonic acid conformation induced by a given calcium to sodium ratio was also applied. After immunogold labelling, the grids were stained with uranyl-acetate, the samples were observed using a transmission electron microscope and the gold particles were counted.

Key Results

In the presence of cadmium, the increase of LM7 labelling in external tangential wall of the epidermis, together with a decrease of JIM7 labelling, suggested a specific role for randomly partially de-esterified HGA to counteract the radial swelling stress. Enhanced JIM5 and 2F4 labelling in the junctions of the inner tissues indicated that the presence of blockwise de-esterified HGA might oppose cell separation.

Conclusions

The response of the hypocotyl to cadmium stress was to adapt the structure of the wall of cortical tissues by differently modulating the methyl-esterification pattern of HGA in various domains.

Keywords: Cadmium; cell wall; hypocotyl; homogalacturonan; JIM5; JIM7; Linum usitatissimum; LM7; 2F4

Journal Article.  6469 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Ecology and Conservation ; Evolutionary Biology ; Plant Sciences and Forestry

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