2000 Volume 75 Issue 4 Pages 179-188
A Cor (cold-responsive) cDNA that belongs to the group-3 Lea (late embryogenesis abundant)/Rab (responsive to abscisic acid, ABA) family was isolated from a winter-hardy cultivar of common wheat (Triticum aestivum L.). Screening of a cold-acclimated cDNA library was performed using an ABA- and other stress-responsive barley cDNA clone, Hva1, as a probe. A wheat cDNA clone (designated as Wrab19) putatively encoded a basic (pI=10.3) and hydrophobic protein with 179 amino acids. The deduced protein showed characteristics of the group-3 LEA/RAB protein family. In contrast to the single copy barley Hva1, Wrab19 belonged to a multigene family in the hexaploid wheat genome and six loci were assigned to the homoeologous group 1 chromosomes. Using Wrab19 as a probe, four homologous cDNAs (designated as Wrab17) were isolated that encoded acidic (pI=4.6-4.7) and hydrophobic proteins, all with 166 amino acids. The deduced proteins showed high homology (a mean of 84% identity) with a barley gibberellic acid (GA3)-inducible protein, ES2A, and several other group-3 LEA/RAB proteins. Wrab17 was considered to be a three-copy gene and each copy was assigned to chromosome 5A, 4B or 4D of hexaploid wheat. Transcripts of both Wrab19 and Wrab17 accumulated within 1 day of cold acclimation at 4°C. They were responsive to ABA and/or GA3, but showed some cultivar differences in their response to these plant hormones. We conclude that the two genes are new members of the group-3 Lea/Rab-related Cor gene family in wheat.