Immunodetection and fluorescent microscopy of transgenically expressed hordeivirus TGBp3 movement protein reveals its association with endoplasmic reticulum elements in close proximity to plasmodesmata
The subcellular localization of the hydrophobic TGBp3 protein of Poa semilatent virus (PSLV, genus Hordeivirus) was studied in transgenic plants using fluorescent microscopy to detect green fluorescent protein (GFP)-tagged protein and immunodetection with monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) raised against the GFP-based fusion expressed in E. coli. In Western blot analysis, mAbs efficiently recognized the wild-type and GFP-fused PSLV TGBp3 proteins expressed in transgenic Nicotiana benthamiana, but failed to detect TGBp3 in hordeivirus-infected plants. It was found that PSLV TGBp3 and GFP–TGBp3 had a tendency to form large protein complexes of an unknown nature. Fractionation studies revealed that TGBp3 represented an integral membrane protein and probably co-localized with an endoplasmic reticulum-derived domain. Microscopy of epidermal cells in transgenic plants demonstrated that GFP–TGBp3 localized to cell wall-associated punctate bodies, which often formed pairs of opposing discrete structures that co-localized with callose, indicating their association with the plasmodesmata-enriched cell wall fields. After mannitol-induced plasmolysis of the leaf epidermal cells in the transgenic plants, TGBp3 appeared within the cytoplasm and not at cell walls. Although TGBp3-induced bodies were normally static, most of them became motile after plasmolysis and displayed stochastic motion in the cytoplasm.
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