J Integr Plant Biol. ›› 2007, Vol. 49 ›› Issue (4): -.DOI: 10.1111/j.1744-7909.2007.00444.x

Special Issue: Cell Biology and Functions

• Development & Photosynthesis •    

AtCLH2, a Typical but Possibly Distinctive Chlorophyllase Gene in Arabidopsis

Yang Liao, Kun An, Xiao Zhou, Wen-Jun Chen and Ben-Ke Kuai   

Abstract: Chlorophyllase (EC 3.1.1.14) is involved in the first step of chlorophyll degradation. Isolation of chlorophyllase genes greatly facilitates characterization of chlorophyllase properties and elucidation of molecular regulation of their in vivo activities. There are two chlorophyllase genes, AtCLH1 and AtCLH2, in Arabidopsis thaliana. The in vivo roles of AtCLH1 have been reported previously. However, few studies have been carried out on AtCLH2. Here, we show that purified recombinant Chlase2, encoded by AtCLH2, exhibits in vitro chlorophyllase activity. Interestingly, 揳ctivation?of in vitro activity of the recombinant Chlase2 required higher concentrations of a detergent or a polar solvent. To determine its activity in vivo, the expression of AtCLH2 was inhibited by RNA interference. RNAi plants showed decreased contents of chlorophyllide without a substantial change in the total amount of the extractable chlorophyll and consequently presented lower chlorophyllide to chlorophyll ratios in their leaves. In addition, the two AtCLHs exhibited differential expression patterns. Our results suggest that AtCLH2 might play a distinctive role in chlorophyll catabolism in vivo.

Key words: Arabidopsis, AtCLH1, AtCLH2, chlorophyllase, chlorophyll degradation, RNA interference.

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