Centrin homologues in higher plants are prominently associated with the developing cell plate

A. J. Del Vecchio, J. D.I. Harper, K. C. Vaughn, A. T. Baron, J. L. Salisbury, R. L. Overall

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


Centrin and calmodulin are members of the EF-hand calcium-binding superfamily of proteins. In this study we compared localisation and immunoblotting of centrin with calmodulin in several monocot (onion and wheat) and dicot (mung bean and Arabidopsis) plants. We confirmed that an anti-calmodulin antibody recognised a 17 kDa protein in all species tested and localises to the cytoplasm, mitotic matrix and with microtubules of the preprophase band and phragmoplast. In contrast, immunoblotting using anti-centrin antibodies shows that plant centrins vary from 17 to 20 kDa. Immunofluorescence microscopy with anti-centrin antibodies revealed only weak centrin immunoreactivity in the cytoplasm, nucleus, nuclear envelope, phragmoplast and mitotic matrix in meristematic cells. There was a slightly more intense perinuclear labelling in large differentiating onion cells and between separating anaphase chromosomes. While centrin is known to localise to the mitotic spindle poles in animal and algal cells, there was no appreciable immunoreactivity at the spindle poles in higher plants. In contrast, there was an intense immunofluorescence signal with anti-centrin antibodies in the developing cell plate. Further characterisation of the cell plate labelling by immunogold electron microscopy shows centrin immunoreactivity was closely associated with vesicles in the cell plate. Our observations suggest that centrin may play a role in cell plate formation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)224-234
Number of pages11
Issue number3-4
StatePublished - Jan 1 1997


  • Calmodulin
  • Cell plate
  • Centrin
  • Confocal microscopy
  • Immunochemistry
  • Mitosis
  • Plants

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Plant Science
  • Cell Biology


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