Expression pattern of the pre-prothaumatin II gene under the control of the CaMV 35S promoter in transgenic cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) flower buds and fruits
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Thaumatin II is an extremely sweet-tasting protein produced by fruits of the West African shrub Thaumatococcus daniellii Benth, so it can be used in biotechnology to improve the tastes of various plant products. This study is concerned with the spatial and temporal aspects of expression of the 35S-pre-prothaumatin II chimeric gene in flower buds and fruits of transgenic cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) line 225. The activity of the 35S promoter in organs of line 225 was compared with its activity in 2 other transgenic lines. The accumulation of recombinant thaumatin varied spatially in flower bud tissues of transgenic lines. We found that these differences in the spatial accumulation of transgenic protein concerned the ovary of female buds and the perianth of male buds. In contrast to flower parts, recombinant thaumatin was found in nearly all parts of the young fruit from the transgenic plants. The pre-prothaumatin II gene expression was detected at a very early developmental stage in male buds, and its pattern was rather conserved as the buds aged. The expression of the transgene was also detected in vascular tissues of examined organs but was undetectable in pollen grains, in agreement with the generally held view that the CaMV 35S promoter is virtually silent in pollen. Immunocytochemical analyses of sections of control organs revealed endogenous homolog(s) of thaumatin when using polyclonal antisera, but not when using monoclonal antibodies for recombinant thaumatin detection in transgenic cucumber.
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M. Szwacka, Department of Plant Genetics, Breeding and Biotechnology, Warsaw University of Life Sciences, Nowoursynowska 159, 02?776 Warszawa, Poland