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Integrating wheat nucleolus structure and function: Variation in the wheat ribosomal RNA and protein genes

Appels, R., Wang, P. and Islam, S. (2021) Integrating wheat nucleolus structure and function: Variation in the wheat ribosomal RNA and protein genes. Frontiers in Plant Science, 12 . Art. 686586.

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We review the coordinated production and integration of the RNA (ribosomal RNA, rRNA) and protein (ribosomal protein, RP) components of wheat cytoplasmic ribosomes in response to changes in genetic constitution, biotic and abiotic stresses. The components examined are highly conserved and identified with reference to model systems such as human, Arabidopsis, and rice, but have sufficient levels of differences in their DNA and amino acid sequences to form fingerprints or gene haplotypes that provide new markers to associate with phenotype variation. Specifically, it is argued that populations of ribosomes within a cell can comprise distinct complements of rRNA and RPs to form units with unique functionalities. The unique functionalities of ribosome populations within a cell can become central in situations of stress where they may preferentially translate mRNAs coding for proteins better suited to contributing to survival of the cell. In model systems where this concept has been developed, the engagement of initiation factors and elongation factors to account for variation in the translation machinery of the cell in response to stresses provided the precedents. The polyploid nature of wheat adds extra variation at each step of the synthesis and assembly of the rRNAs and RPs which can, as a result, potentially enhance its response to changing environments and disease threats.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Veterinary and Life Sciences
Publisher: Frontiers
Copyright: © 2021 Appels et al.
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