Plant Growth Regulation

, Volume 49, Issue 2–3, pp 237–247 | Cite as

IAA, ABA, polyamines and free amino acids associated with zygotic embryo development of Ocotea catharinensis

  • Claudete Santa-Catarina
  • Vanildo Silveira
  • Tiago S. Balbuena
  • Ana Maria Viana
  • Maria Emilia M. Estelita
  • Walter Handro
  • Eny I. S. Floh
Original Paper


The aim of this work was to study morphological and biochemical aspects during zygotic embryogenesis in O. catharinensis, by measuring changes in the endogenous concentrations of proteins, amino acids, polyamines (PAs), indole-3-acetic acid (IAA) and abscisic acid (ABA). Buffer-soluble and insoluble protein contents were determined by spectrometry, and amino acids, PAs, IAA and ABA concentrations were determined by high performance liquid chromatography. Total amino acid accumulation, predominantly asparagine, occurred when the embryo showed completely developed cotyledons, with posterior reduction in the mature embryo. This decrease in total amino acid concentration in the mature embryo may result from their use in storage␣as well as for LEA protein synthesis. Free putrescine (Put) concentration decreased, while free spermine (Spm) increased during embryo development. This suggest a role for Put in the initial phases of embryogenesis when high rates of cell division occur, while elevated concentration of Spm are essential from the middle to the end of embryo development, when growth is mainly due to cell elongation. An IAA peak in zygotic embryos occurred during initial development, suggesting a link between growth and cellular division as well as with the establishment of bilateral symmetry. ABA concentration declined during initial stages of development then increased at the mature embryo stage, suggesting a possible relationship with dormancy and recalcitrance characteristics. Our results show that changes in the phytohormones (IAA, ABA and PAs) concentrations in combination with amino acids are likely important factors determining the developmental stages of O.␣catharinensis zygotic embryos.


Indole-3-acetic acid Abscisic acid Zygotic embryogenesis Polyamines Proteins Amino acids 



Indole-3-acetic acid


Abscisic acid


Coefficient of variation


Fresh matter


γ-Aminobutyric acid


High performance liquid chromatography










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This research was carried out with financial support from the State of São Paulo Research Foundation (FAPESP) and the National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq). The authors thank M.Sc. Antônio da Silva and Instituto Florestal of São Paulo for providing O. catharinensis fruits.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Claudete Santa-Catarina
    • 1
  • Vanildo Silveira
    • 1
  • Tiago S. Balbuena
    • 1
  • Ana Maria Viana
    • 2
  • Maria Emilia M. Estelita
    • 3
  • Walter Handro
    • 1
  • Eny I. S. Floh
    • 1
  1. 1.Plant Cell Biology Laboratory, Department of BotanyIB-University of São PauloSão PauloBrazil
  2. 2.Laboratory of Plant Physiology, Department of BotanyCCB-University of Santa CatarinaFlorianópolisBrazil
  3. 3.Laboratory of Plant Anatomy, Department of BotanyIB-University of São PauloSão PauloBrazil

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