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Tomato Gene Profiling Provides Small Signaling Peptide Clues

Researchers at the University of Fribourg and the center's Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics consider family of small signaling peptide-coding CLE genes contributing to a range of functions and biological responses in plants, focusing on SlCLE genes in the Solanum lycopersicum tomato plant. As the team reports in BMC Genomics, it used tomato genome data, published RNA sequences, phylogenetics, and comparative genomics to find more than 50 SlCLE genes expressed within or across plant tissue types or conditions — a set that included more than three dozen SlCLE genes not described in the past. "Our study aimed to re-analyze the repertoire of tomato CLE genes in order to build a better basis for the future functional studies," the authors write, noting that the current results suggest that "some SlCLEs are root-specific, while others are highly induced during fruit development or following prolonged drought stress."