Differential expression of genes identified by suppression subtractive hybridization in petals of opening carnation flowers

Taro Harada, Yuka Torii, Shigeto Morita, Takehiro Masumura, Shigeru Satoh

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40 Citations (Scopus)


Flower opening is an event accompanied by morphological changes in petals which include elongation, expansion, and outward-curving. Petal cell growth is a fundamental process that underlies such phenomena, but its molecular mechanism remains largely unknown. Suppression subtractive hybridization was performed between petals during the early elongation period (stage 1) and during the opening period (stage 5) in carnation flowers and a pair of subtraction libraries abundant in differentially expressed genes was constructed at each stage. 393 cDNA clones picked up by differential screening out of 1728 clones were sequenced and 235 different cDNA fragments were identified, among which 211 did not match any known nucleotide sequence of carnation genes in the databases. BLASTX search of nucleotide sequences revealed that putative functions of the translational products can be classified into several categories including transcription, signalling, cell wall modification, lipid metabolism, and transport. Open reading frames of 15 selected genes were successfully determined by rapid amplification of cDNA ends (RACE). Time-course analysis of these genes by real-time RT-PCR showed that transcript levels of several genes correlatively fluctuate in petals of opening carnation flowers, suggesting an association with the morphological changes by elongation or curving. Based on the results, it is suggested that the growth of carnation petals is controlled by co-ordinated gene expression during the progress of flower opening. In addition, the possible roles of some key genes in the initiation of cell growth, the construction of the cell wall and cuticle, and transport across membranes were discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2345-2354
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of experimental botany
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - May 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Carnation
  • Flower opening
  • Gene expression
  • Petal cell growth
  • Suppression subtractive hybridization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Plant Science


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