Journal Article

<i>AtATG</i> Genes, Homologs of Yeast Autophagy Genes, are Involved in Constitutive Autophagy in <i>Arabidopsis</i> Root Tip Cells

Yuko Inoue, Takao Suzuki, Masaki Hattori, Kohki Yoshimoto, Yoshinori Ohsumi and Yuji Moriyasu

in Plant and Cell Physiology

Published on behalf of Japanese Society of Plant Physiologists

Volume 47, issue 12, pages 1641-1652
Published in print December 2006 | ISSN: 0032-0781
Published online December 2006 | e-ISSN: 1471-9053 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/pcp/pcl031
AtATG Genes, Homologs of Yeast Autophagy Genes, are Involved in Constitutive Autophagy in Arabidopsis Root Tip Cells

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  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular and Cell Biology
  • Plant Sciences and Forestry

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In Arabidopsis root tips cultured in medium containing sufficient nutrients and the membrane-permeable protease inhibitor E-64d, parts of the cytoplasm accumulated in the vacuoles of the cells from the meristematic zone to the elongation zone. Also in barley root tips treated with E-64, parts of the cytoplasm accumulated in autolysosomes and pre-existing central vacuoles. These results suggest that vacuolar and/or lysosomal autophagy occurs constitutively in these regions of cells. 3-Methyladenine, an inhibitor of autophagy, inhibited the accumulation of such inclusions in Arabidopsis root tip cells. Such inclusions were also not observed in root tips prepared from Arabidopsis T-DNA mutants in which AtATG2 or AtATG5, an Arabidopsis homolog of yeast ATG genes essential for autophagy, is disrupted. In contrast, an atatg9 mutant, in which another homolog of ATG is disrupted, accumulated a significant number of vacuolar inclusions in the presence of E-64d. These results suggest that both AtAtg2 and AtAtg5 proteins are essential for autophagy whereas AtAtg9 protein contributes to, but is not essential for, autophagy in Arabidopsis root tip cells. Autophagy that is sensitive to 3-methyladenine and dependent on Atg proteins constitutively occurs in the root tip cells of Arabidopsis.

Keywords: Arabidopsis; Autophagy; Cysteine protease inhibitor; 3-Methyladenine; Root tip cells; Vacuole

Journal Article.  6734 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Biochemistry ; Molecular and Cell Biology ; Plant Sciences and Forestry

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