• Cytosolic calcium levels and stress induced y-amino butyrate synthesis in asparagus mesophyll cells

      Cholewa, Ewa M.; Department of Biological Sciences (Brock University, 1995-07-09)
      Numerous investigations have demonstrated large increases in y-amino butyrate (GABA) levels in response to a variety of stresses such as touch or cold shock (Wallace et ale 1984) Circumstantial evidence indicating a role of Ca2 + in these increases includes elevated Ca2+ levels in response to touch and cold shock (Knight et ale 1991), and the demonstration of a calmodulin binding domain on glutamate decarboxylase (GAD), the enzyme responsible for GABA synthesis (Baum et al 1993) In the present study the possible role of Ca2+ and calmodulin in stimulation of GAD and subsequent GABA accumulation was examined using asparagus mesophyll cells. Images of cells loaded with the Ca2+ indicator Fluo-3 revealed a rapid and transient increase in cytosolic Ca2+ in response to cold shock. GABA levels increased by 106% within 15 min. of cold shock. This increase was inhibited 70% by the calmodulin antagonist W7, and 42% by the Ca2+ channel blocker La3+.. Artificial elevation of intracellular Ca2+ by the Ca2+ionophore A23187 resulted in an 61% increase in GABA levels. Stimulation of GABA synthesis by ABA resulted in an 83% increase in GABA levels which was inhibited 55% by W7. These results support the hypothesis that cold shock stimulates Ca2+ entry into the cytosol of the cells which results in Ca2+/calmodulin mediated activation of GAD and consequent GABA synthesis.
    • L-Glutamate uptake, decarboxylation to -aminobutyric acid and GABA efflux in isolated Asparagus sprengeri mesophyll cells

      Chung, Induk.; Department of Biological Sciences (Brock University, 1989-07-09)
      Addition of L-glutamate caused alkalinization of the medium surrounding Asparagus spreng.ri mesophyll cells. This suggests a H+/L-glutmate symport uptake system for L-glutamate. However stoichiometries of H+/L-glutamate symport into Asparagus cells were much higher than those in other plant systems. Medium alkalinization may also result from a metabolic decarboxylation process. Since L-glutmate is decarboxylated to r-amino butyric acid (SABA) in this system, the origin of medium alkalinization was reconsidered. Suspensions of mechanically isolated and photosyntheically competent Asparagus sprengeri mesophyll cells were used to investigate the H+/L-glutamate symport system, SABA production, GABA transport, and the origin of L-glutamate dependent medium alkalinization. The major results obtained are summarized as follows: 1. L-Glutamate and GABA were the second or third most abundant amino acids in these cells. Cellular concentrations of L-glutamate were 1.09 mM and 1.31 mM in the light and dark, respectively. Those of SABA were 1.23 mM and 1.17 mM in the light and dark, respectively. 2. Asparagine was the most abundant amino acid in xylem sap and comprised 54 to 68 1. of the amino acid pool on a molar basis. GABA was the second most abundant amino acid and represented 10 to 11 1. of the amino acid pool. L-Slutamate was a minor component. 3. A 10 minute incubation with 1 mM L-glutamate increased the production of GABA in the medium by 2,743 7. and 2,241 7. in the light and dark, respectively. 4. L-Glutamate entered the cells prior to decarboxylation. 5. There was no evidence for a H+/GABA symport process • 6. GABA was produced by loss of carbon-1 of L-glutamate. 7. The specific activity of newly synthesized labeled GABA suggests that it is not equilibrated with a storage pool of GABA. 8. The mechanism of GABA efflux appears to be a passive process. 9. The evidence indicates that the origin of L-glutamate dependent medium alkalinization is a H+/L-glutamate symport not an extracellular decarboxylation. The possible role of GABA production in regulating cytoplasmic pH and L-glutamate levels during rapid electrogenic H+/L-glutamate symport is discussed.
    • The production of 4-adminobutyrate in response to treatments reducing cytosolic pH and the regulation of intracellular pH

      Crawford, Lesley A.; Department of Biological Sciences (Brock University, 1993-07-09)
      GABA (4-aminobutyrate) is synthesized through the decarboxylation of LGlu- (L-Glu-+ H+ ---> GABA + C02), and compared to many free amino acids is present in high concentrations in plant cells. GABA levels rise rapidly and dramatically in response to varied stress conditions including anaerobiosis. Recent papers suggest that GABA production and associated H+ consumption are parts of a metabolic pH-stat mechanism which ameliorates the intracellular pH decline associated with anaerobiosis or other treatments. To test this hypothesis GABA production and efflux have been measured in isolated Asparagus sprengeri cells in response to three treatments which potentially cause intracellular acidification. Acid loads were imposed using 60 min of (i) anaerobiosis, (ii) H+/LGlu- cotransport, and (iii) treatment with permeant weak acids (butyric, acetic and propionic). Both intra- and extracellular GABA concentrations increased more than 100% after anaerobiosis, almost 1000% after H+/L-Glu- cotransport (light or dark) and almost 5000/0 after addition of 5 mM butyric acid at pH 5.0. HPLC analysis of amino acids indicates that as GABA concentrations increased in response to butyric acid addition, glutamate concentrations decreased. Time-course studies demonstrated that added butyric acid stimulates GABA production by 2800/0 within 15 seconds. A fluorescent determination of cytosolic pH indicates that addition of butyric or other weak acids resulted in a rapid reduction in cytosolic pH of 0.6 pH units. The half time for the response to butyric acid addition is 2.1 seconds, indicating that the decline in cytosolic pH is rapid enough to account for the rapid stimulation of GABA production. The acid load in response to butyric acid addition was assayed by measurements of 14C-butyric acid uptake. Calculations indicate that GABA production accounted for 45% of the imposed acid load. The biological significance of GABA efflux is not yet understood. The results support the original hypothesis suggesting a role for GABA production in cellular pH regulation.