Abstract Detail

Development and Structure

Prater, Nevaeh [1], Schenk, John [2].

What role does programmed cell death play in staminode evolution in Lepidium (Brassicaceae)?

Brassicaceae flowers typically have four sepals, four petals, tetradynamous stamens, and two carpels. The genus Lepidium, however, has experienced multiple, independent losses of petals and stamens.  Loss of functional stamens in hermaphroditic flowers is often associated with the development of vestigial, sterile structures called staminodes. Staminodes appear to be homologous with stamen filaments in Lepidium, however, the genetic controls responsible for staminode development are poorly understood. A previous study determined that programmed cell death was involved with male sterilization and subsequent staminode development in some carpellate flowers. We hypothesize that programmed cell death is also a key genetic control of staminode development in hermaphroditic species of Lepidium. To test our hypothesis, we applied colorimetric TUNEL assays, which allow for visualization of cell apoptosis. Preliminary results of TUNEL assays on L. virginicum suggest that programmed cell death has occurred on staminode primordia, as inferred from dense staining compared to the negative and positive controls. Our preliminary results suggest that programmed cell death is one genetic control that has facilitated the transition of stamens to vestigial staminodes in Lepidium.

Related Links:
Schenk Lab Website

1 - Ohio University, Department of Environmental & Plant Biology, 22 Richland Ave., Porter Hall 401, Athens, Ohio, 45701, United States
2 - Ohio University, Department Of Environmental And Plant Biology, 22 Richland Ave., 401 Porter Hall, Athens, OH, 45701, United States

floral evolution
programmed cell death.

Presentation Type: Poster
Number: PDS011
Abstract ID:493
Candidate for Awards:Developmental and Structural Section best poster

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