Meristem dormancy in perennial plants is a developmental process that results in repression of metabolism and growth. The cessation of dormancy results in rapid growth and should be associated with the production of nascent transcripts that encode for gene products controlling for cell division and growth. Dormancy cessation was allowed to progress normally or was chemically induced using bromoethane (BE), and microarray analysis was used to demonstrate changes in specific transcripts in response to dormancy cessation before a significant increase in cell division. Comparison of normal dormancy cessation to BE-induced dormancy cessation revealed a commonality in both up and downregulated transcripts. Many transcripts that decrease as dormancy terminates are inducible by abscisic acid particularly in the conserved BURP domain proteins, which include the RD22 class of proteins and in the storage protein patatin. Transcripts that are associated with an increase in expression encoded for proteins in the oxoglutarate-dependent oxygenase family. We conclude that BE-induced cessation of dormancy initiates transcript profiles similar to the natural processes that control dormancy.
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