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Wang, Liangsheng; Leister, Dario; Kleine, Tatjana (2020): Chloroplast development and genomes uncoupled signaling are independent of the RNA-directed DNA methylation pathway. In: Scientific Reports, Vol. 10, No. 1, 15412
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The Arabidopsis genome is methylated in CG and non-CG (CHG, and CHH in which H stands for A, T, or C) sequence contexts. DNA methylation has been suggested to be critical for seed development, and CHH methylation patterns change during stratification and germination. In plants, CHH methylation occurs mainly through the RNA-directed DNA methylation (RdDM) pathway. To test for an involvement of the RdDM pathway in chloroplast development, we analyzed seedling greening and the maximum quantum yield of photosystem II (F-v/F-m) in Arabidopsis thaliana seedlings perturbed in components of that pathway. Neither seedling greening nor F-v/F-m in seedlings and adult plants were affected in this comprehensive set of mutants, indicating that alterations in the RdDM pathway do not affect chloroplast development. Application of inhibitors like lincomycin or norflurazon inhibits greening of seedlings and represses the expression of photosynthesis-related genes including LIGHT HARVESTING CHLOROPHYLL A/B BINDING PROTEIN1.2 (LHCB1.2) in the nucleus. Our results indicate that the LHCB1.2 promoter is poorly methylated under both control conditions and after inhibitor treatment. Therefore no correlation between LHCB1.2 mRNA transcription and methylation changes of the LHCB1.2 promoter could be established. Moreover, we conclude that perturbations in the RdDM pathway do not interfere with gun signaling.