The rf2 Nuclear Restorer Gene of Male-Sterile T-Cytoplasm Maize

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Science  31 May 1996:
Vol. 272, Issue 5266, pp. 1334-1336
DOI: 10.1126/science.272.5266.1334


The T cytoplasm of maize serves as a model for the nuclear restoration of cytoplasmic male sterility. The rf2 gene, one of two nuclear genes required for fertility restoration in male-sterile T-cytoplasm (cmsT) maize, was cloned. The protein predicted by the rf2 sequence is a putative aldehyde dehydrogenase, which suggests several mechanisms that might explain Rf2-mediated fertility restoration in cmsT maize. Aldehyde dehydrogenase may be involved in the detoxification of acetaldehyde produced by ethanolic fermentation during pollen development, may play a role in energy metabolism, or may interact with URF13, the mitochondrial protein associated with male sterility in cmsT maize.

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