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Abstract Detail

Developmental and Structural Section

Ross Friedman, Cynthia [1].

Immunolocalization of aquaporins in the fruit of the dwarf mistletoe Arceuthobium americanum (Viscaceae).

Dwarf mistletoes (genus Arceuthobium) are dioecious, hemiparasitic angiosperms. In British Columbia (BC), the dwarf mistletoe A. americanum Nutt. ex Engelm. parasitizes lodgepole pines (Pinus contorta), and seriously compromises the health of BC pine forests. All dwarf mistletoes disperse their seeds by a remarkable process of explosive discharge, allowing further parasitism of the original host as well as infestation of neighboring trees. Through multiple infections, A. americanum will ultimately kill its host. To better understand dwarf mistletoe pathology, elucidation of the discharge process at the cellular level is critical. Previous work has shown that the generation of a large hydrostatic pressure within the dwarf mistletoe fruit will trigger the discharge. Many independent studies have established that aquaporins, highly-conserved integral membrane proteins, play a pivotal role in facilitating water movement within plant tissues. As such, we suspected that aquaporins are involved in the generation of water pressure within the fruit. Therefore, we wanted to see if aquaporins were present in the dwarf mistletoe fruit. To do this, we obtained an antibody against a tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum) plasma membrane aquaporin (Plasma membrane Intrinsic Protein I) that had been raised in a rabbit. Ultrathin LR White sections were obtained from fruit at two stages of development three months and one month prior to explosive discharge. The sections were then subjected to immunocytochemistry and transmission electron microscopy. Preliminary results indicate that the anti-tobacco aquaporin antibody does cross-react with putative aquaporin(s) in the dwarf mistletoe fruit. More work, including statistical analysis, is required to determine which tissue(s) and which stages of development exhibit greater degrees of binding.

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1 - Thompson Rivers University, Department of Biological Sciences, Box 3010, 900 McGill Road, Kamloops, BC, V2C 5N3, Canada

Arceuthobium americanum
electron microscopy
explosive discharge
hydrostatic pressure
plasma membrane intrinsic protein (PIP)
water movement.

Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Sections
Session: 33
Location: 215/SUB
Date: Tuesday, July 29th, 2008
Time: 10:30 AM
Number: 33010
Abstract ID:701

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