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      Photoperiod Extension Enhances Sexual Megaspore Formation and Triggers Metabolic Reprogramming in Facultative Apomictic Ranunculus auricomus

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          Meiosis, the key step of sexual reproduction, persists in facultative apomictic plants functional to some extent. However, it still remains unclear how and why proportions of reproductive pathways vary under different environmental stress conditions. We hypothesized that oxidative stress mediates alterations of developmental pathways. In apomictic plants we expected that megasporogenesis, the stage directly after meiosis, would be more affected than later stages of seed development. To simulate moderate stress conditions we subjected clone-mates of facultative apomictic Ranunculus auricomus to 10 h photoperiods, reflecting natural conditions, and extended ones (16.5 h). Reproduction mode was screened directly after megasporogenesis (microscope) and at seed stage (flow cytometric seed screening). Targeted metabolite profiles were performed with HPLC–DAD to explore if and which metabolic reprogramming was caused by the extended photoperiod. Prolonged photoperiods resulted in increased frequencies of sexual vs. aposporous initials directly after meiosis, but did not affect frequencies of sexual vs. asexual seed formation. Changes in secondary metabolite profiles under extended photoperiods affected all classes of compounds, and c. 20% of these changes separated the two treatments. Unexpectedly, the renowned antioxidant phenylpropanoids and flavonoids added more to clone-mate variation than to treatment differentiation. Among others, chlorophyll degradation products, non-assigned phenolic compounds and more lipophilic metabolites also contributed to the dissimilarity of the metabolic profiles of plants that had been exposed to the two different photoperiods. The hypothesis of moderate light stress effects was supported by increased proportions of sexual megaspore development at the expense of aposporous initial formation. The lack of effects at the seed stage confirms the basic assumption that only meiosis and sporogenesis would be sensitive to light stress. The concomitant change of secondary metabolite profiles, as a systemic response at this early developmental stage, supports the notion that oxidative stress could have affected megasporogenesis by causing the observed metabolic reprogramming. Hypotheses of genotype-specific responses to prolonged photoperiods are rejected.

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          Most cited references 55

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          Primer3Plus, an enhanced web interface to Primer3

          Here we present Primer3Plus, a new web interface to the popular Primer3 primer design program as an enhanced alternative for the CGI- scripts that come with Primer3. Primer3 consists of a command line program and a web interface. The web interface is one large form showing all of the possible options. This makes the interface powerful, but at the same time confusing for occasional users. Primer3Plus provides an intuitive user interface using present-day web technologies and has been developed in close collaboration with molecular biologists and technicians regularly designing primers. It focuses on the task at hand, and hides detailed settings from the user until these are needed. We also added functionality to automate specific tasks like designing primers for cloning or step-wise sequencing. Settings and designed primer sequences can be stored locally for later use. Primer3Plus supports a range of common sequence formats, such as FASTA. Finally, primers selected by Primer3Plus can be sent to an order form, allowing tight integration into laboratory ordering systems. Moreover, the open architecture of Primer3Plus allows easy expansion or integration of external software packages. The Primer3Plus Perl source code is available under GPL license from SourceForge. Primer3Plus is available at
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             J. Müller (1964)
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              Oxidative modifications to cellular components in plants.

              Reactive oxygen species (ROS) and reactive nitrogen species (RNS) are produced in many places in living cells and at an increased rate during biotic or abiotic stress. ROS and RNS participate in signal transduction, but also modify cellular components and cause damage. We first look at the most common ROS and their properties. We then consider the ways in which the cell can regulate their production and removal. We critically assess current knowledge about modifications of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs), DNA, carbohydrates, and proteins and illustrate this knowledge with case stories wherever possible. Some oxidative breakdown products, e.g., from PUFA, can cause secondary damage. Other oxidation products are secondary signaling molecules. We consider the fate of the modified components, the energetic costs to the cell of replacing such components, as well as strategies to minimize transfer of oxidatively damaged components to the next generation.

                Author and article information

                Front Plant Sci
                Front Plant Sci
                Front. Plant Sci.
                Frontiers in Plant Science
                Frontiers Media S.A.
                08 March 2016
                : 7
                1Albrecht-von-Haller-Institute for Plant Sciences, Department of Systematics, Biodiversity and Evolution of Plants (with Herbarium), Georg-August-University of Göttingen , Göttingen, Germany
                2Albrecht-von-Haller-Institute for Plant Sciences, Department of Plant Biochemistry, Georg-August-University of Göttingen , Göttingen, Germany
                Author notes

                Edited by: Patricia Springer, University of California Riverside, USA

                Reviewed by: Alma Armenta-Medina, LANGEBIO–CINVESTAV, Mexico; Jean-Philippe Vielle-Calzada, CINVESTAV, Mexico

                *Correspondence: Elvira Hörandl, elvira.hoerandl@

                This article was submitted to Plant Evolution and Development, a section of the journal Frontiers in Plant Science

                Copyright © 2016 Klatt, Hadacek, Hodač, Brinkmann, Eilerts, Hojsgaard and Hörandl.

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) or licensor are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

                Page count
                Figures: 4, Tables: 1, Equations: 0, References: 76, Pages: 13, Words: 0
                Funded by: Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft 10.13039/501100001659
                Award ID: Ho 4359/1-1
                Plant Science
                Original Research


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