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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2009

Identification of PaCOL1 and PaCOL2, two CONSTANS-like genes showing decreased transcript levels preceding short day induced growth cessation in Norway spruce

Holefors Anna, Opseth Lars, Ree Rosnes Anne Katrine, Ripel Linda, Snipen Lars, Fossdal Carl Gunnar, Olsen Jorunn


In woody plants of the temperate zone short photoperiod (SD) leads to growth cessation. In angiosperms CONSTANS (CO) or CO-like genes play an important role in the photoperiodic control of flowering, tuberisation and shoot growth. To investigate the role of CO-like genes in photoperiodic control of shoot elongation in gymnosperms, PaCOL1 and PaCOL2 were isolated from Norway spruce. PaCOL1 encodes a 3.9kb gene with a predicted protein of 444 amino acids. PaCOL2 encodes a 1.2kb gene with a predicted protein of 385 amino acids. Both genes consist of two exons and have conserved domains found in other CO-like genes; two zinc finger domains, a CCT and a COOH domain. PaCOL1 and PaCOL2 fall into the group 1c clade of the CO-like genes, and are thus distinct from Arabidopsis CO that belongs to group 1a. Transcript levels of both PaCOL-genes appear to be light regulated, an increasing trend was observed upon transition from darkness to light, and a decreasing trend during darkness. The increasing trend at dawn was observed both in needles and shoot tips, whereas the decreasing trend in darkness was most prominent in shoot tips, and limited to the late part of the dark period in needles. The transcript levels of both genes decreased significantly in both tissues under SD prior to growth cessation and bud formation. This might suggest an involvement in photoperiodic control of shoot elongation or might be a consequence of regulation by light

Published in

Plant Physiology and Biochemistry
2009, Volume: 47, number: 2, pages: 105–115

    SLU Authors

    • Holefors, Anna

      • Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU)

    UKÄ Subject classification

    Environmental Sciences related to Agriculture and Land-use

    Publication Identifiers


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