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      Molecular characterization of a cDNA encoding Cu/Zn superoxide dismutase from Deschampsia antarctica and its expression regulated by cold and UV stresses


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          The Copper/Zinc superoxide dismutase (Cu/ZnSOD) gene, SOD gene, was isolated from a Deschampsia antarctica Desv. by cDNA library screening. The expression of SOD gene in the leaves of D. antarctica was determined by RT-PCR and its differential expression of gene transcripts in conditions of cold and UV radiation stresses was revealed by northern blot.


          The molecular characterization shows that SOD cDNA is 709 bp in length, which translates an ORF of 152 amino acids that correspond to a protein of predicted molecular mass of 15 kDa. The assay shows that the expression of SOD gene increases when D. antarctica is acclimatised to 4°C and exposed to UV radiation. These results indicate that the SOD gene of D. antarctica is involved in the antioxidative process triggered by oxidative stress induced by the conditions of environmental change in which they live.


          The present results allow us to know the characteristics of Cu/ZnSOD gene from D. antarctica and understand that its expression is regulated by cold and UV radiation.

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          Most cited references 27

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          Superoxide radical and superoxide dismutases.

           I Fridovich (1995)
          O2- oxidizes the [4Fe-4S] clusters of dehydratases, such as aconitase, causing-inactivation and release of Fe(II), which may then reduce H2O2 to OH- +OH.. SODs inhibit such HO. production by scavengingO2-, but Cu, ZnSODs, by virtue of a nonspecific peroxidase activity, may peroxidize spin trapping agents and thus give the appearance of catalyzing OH. production from H2O2. There is a glycosylated, tetrameric Cu, ZnSOD in the extracellular space that binds to acidic glycosamino-glycans. It minimizes the reaction of O2- with NO. E. coli, and other gram negative microorganisms, contain a periplasmic Cu, ZnSOD that may serve to protect against extracellular O2-. Mn(III) complexes of multidentate macrocyclic nitrogenous ligands catalyze the dismutation of O2- and are being explored as potential pharmaceutical agents. SOD-null mutants have been prepared to reveal the biological effects of O2-. SodA, sodB E. coli exhibit dioxygen-dependent auxotrophies and enhanced mutagenesis, reflecting O2(-)-sensitive biosynthetic pathways and DNA damage. Yeast, lacking either Cu, ZnSOD or MnSOD, are oxygen intolerant, and the double mutant was hypermutable and defective in sporulation and exhibited requirements for methionine and lysine. A Cu, ZnSOD-null Drosophila exhibited a shortened lifespan.
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            Evidence for Chilling-Induced Oxidative Stress in Maize Seedlings and a Regulatory Role for Hydrogen Peroxide.

            We have taken advantage of an acclimation phenomenon in a chilling-sensitive maize inbred to investigate the molecular, biochemical, and physiological responses to chilling in preemergent maize seedlings. Three-day-old seedlings were exposed to 4[deg]C for 7 days and did not survive chilling stress unless they were preexposed to 14[deg]C for 3 days. cDNAs representing three chilling acclimation-responsive (CAR) genes were isolated by subtraction hybridization and differential screening and found to be differentially expressed during acclimation. Identification of one of these CAR genes as cat3, which encodes the mitochondrial catalase3 isozyme, led us to hypothesize that chilling imposes oxidative stress in the seedlings. Hydrogen peroxide levels were elevated during both acclimation and chilling of nonacclimated seedlings. Further molecular and biochemical analyses indicated that whereas superoxide dismutase activity was not affected, the levels of cat3 transcripts and the activities of catalase3 and guaiacol peroxidase were elevated in mesocotyls during acclimation. Accumulation of H2O2 following a short treatment with aminotriazole, a catalase inhibitor, indicated that catalase3 seems to be an important H2O2-scavenging enzyme in the seedlings. Control 3-day-old seedlings pretreated with H2O2 or menadione, a superoxide-generating compound, at 27[deg]C induced chilling tolerance. Both of these chemical treatments also increased cat3 transcripts and catalase3 and guaiacol peroxidase activities. We suggest that peroxide has dual effects at low temperatures. During acclimation, its early accumulation signals the production of antioxidant enzymes such as catalase3 and guaiacol peroxidase. At 4[deg]C, in nonacclimated seedlings, it accumulates to damaging levels in the tissues due to low levels of these, and perhaps other, antioxidant enzymes.
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              Oxidative stress: molecular perception and transduction of signals triggering antioxidant gene defenses

              Molecular oxygen (O2) is the premier biological electron acceptor that serves vital roles in fundamental cellular functions. However, with the beneficial properties of O2 comes the inadvertent formation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) such as superoxide (O2 ·- ), hydrogen peroxide, and hydroxyl radical (OH · ). If unabated, ROS pose a serious threat to or cause the death of aerobic cells. To minimize the damaging effects of ROS, aerobic organisms evolved non-enzymatic and enzymatic antioxidant defenses. The latter include catalases, peroxidases, superoxide dismutases, and glutathione S-transferases (GST). Cellular ROS-sensing mechanisms are not well understood, but a number of transcription factors that regulate the expression of antioxidant genes are well characterized in prokaryotes and in yeast. In higher eukaryotes, oxidative stress responses are more complex and modulated by several regulators. In mammalian systems, two classes of transcription factors, nuclear factor kB and activator protein-1, are involved in the oxidative stress response. Antioxidant-specific gene induction, involved in xenobiotic metabolism, is mediated by the "antioxidant responsive element" (ARE) commonly found in the promoter region of such genes. ARE is present in mammalian GST, metallothioneine-I and MnSod genes, but has not been found in plant Gst genes. However, ARE is present in the promoter region of the three maize catalase (Cat) genes. In plants, ROS have been implicated in the damaging effects of various environmental stress conditions. Many plant defense genes are activated in response to these conditions, including the three maize Cat and some of the superoxide dismutase (Sod) genes.

                Author and article information

                BMC Res Notes
                BMC Research Notes
                BioMed Central
                28 September 2009
                : 2
                : 198
                [1 ]Laboratorio de Biología Molecular Aplicada, Instituto de Agroindustrias, Facultad de Ciencias Agropecuarias y Forestales, Universidad de La Frontera, Casilla 54-D, Temuco, Chile
                [2 ]VentureL@b, Escuela de Negocios, Universidad Adolfo Ibáñez, Av. Diagonal Las Torres 2700, Peñalolén, Santiago, Chile
                Copyright © 2009 Gidekel et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

                This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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