Simple, but not branched, plasmodesmata allow the nonspecific trafficking of proteins in developing tobacco leaves

K. J. Oparka, A. G. Roberts, P. Boevink, S. S. Cruz, I. Roberts, K. S. Pradel, A. Imlau, G. Kotlizky, N. Sauer, B. Epel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Leaves undergo a sink-source transition during which a physiological change occurs from carbon import to export. In sink leaves, biolistic bombardment of plasmids encoding GFP-fusion proteins demonstrated that proteins with an M(r) up to 50 kDa could move freely through plasmodesmata. During the sink-source transition, the capacity to traffic proteins decreased substantially and was accompanied by a developmental switch from simple to branched forms of plasmodesmata. Inoculation of sink leaves with a movement protein-defective virus showed that virally expressed GFP, but not viral RNA, was capable of trafficking between sink cells during infection. Contrary to dogma that plasmodesmata have a size exclusion limit below 1 kDa, the data demonstrate that nonspecific 'macromolecular trafficking' is a general feature of simple plasmodesmata in sink leaves.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)743-754
Number of pages12
JournalCell
Volume97
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - 1999
Externally publishedYes

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