Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Calmodulin as a regulator of circadian clock function and photoperiodic flowering in Arabidopsis thaliana
Author: Murphy, Andrew James
ISNI:       0000 0004 2679 219X
Awarding Body: University of Exeter
Current Institution: University of Exeter
Date of Award: 2009
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Access from Institution:
Discrete changes in the amplitude, frequency, and cellular localisation of calcium ion (Ca2+) transients encode information about numerous stimuli and function to mediate stimulus-specific responses. Cytoplasmic Ca2+ (Ca2+cyt) undergoes circadian oscillations in concentration that appear to be under the control of the same endogenous oscillator that regulates expression of genes in the photoperiodic-flowering pathway. It is currently not known whether these circadian [Ca2+cyt] oscillations are biochemical artefacts or are decoded and function to transduce clock dependent responses. Calmodulin (CaM) is a primary node in Ca2+ signalling in plants and as such is a promising target for investigating the role of Ca2+ in clock-controlled processes. In this study, Arabidopsis thaliana were treated with experimentally validated concentrations of pharmacological CaM inhibitors. Under inductive photoperiods (16 h light : 8 h dark), CaM inhibition was found to increase developmental flowering time, whilst under non-inductive photoperiods no such changes were evident. Inhibition of CaM led to changes in expression of the key clock gene TIMING OF CAB EXPRESSION 1 and flowering time genes, CONSTANS and FLOWERING LOCUS T and removed repression of flowering in darkness. These observations are consistent with CaM modulating the activity of the putative clock component GIGANTEA and the proteasomal targeting protein SUPPRESSOR OF PHYA-105. Due to the unwanted side effects often generated by chemical CaM inhibitors, a peptide inhibitor of CaM comprising a green fluorescent protein / calspermin fusion and labelled smGN was developed. Surface plasmon resonance analysis and affinity chromatography showed smGN to have extremely high selectivity for, and affinity to, CaM and to function as a powerful inhibitor of CaM in vitro. Further work on the methodology used to deploy smGN as a recombinant alternative to chemical CaM inhibitors in planta is also described.
Supervisor: Love, John Sponsor: BBSRC
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Photoperiodism ; Calmodulin ; Calspermin ; Arabidopsis ; SPR ; Circadian