Polyamines and Plant Stress: Activation of Putrescine Biosynthesis by Osmotic Shock

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Science  24 Sep 1982:
Vol. 217, Issue 4566, pp. 1259-1261
DOI: 10.1126/science.217.4566.1259


The putrescine content of oat leaf cells and protoplasts increases up to 60-fold within 6 hours of exposure to osmotic stress (0.4 to 0.6 molar sorbitol). Barley, corn, wheat, and wild oat leaves show a similar response. Increased arginine decarboxylase activity parallels the rise in putrescine, whereas ornithine decarboxylase remains unchanged. DL-α-Difluoromethylarginine, a specific irreversible inhibitor of arginine decarboxylase, prevents the stress-induced rise in increase in arginine decarboxylase activity and putrescine synthesis, indicating the preferential activation of this pathway.

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