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1.  Moderate Increase of Mean Daily Temperature Adversely Affects Fruit Set of Lycopersicon esculentum by Disrupting Specific Physiological Processes in Male Reproductive Development 
Annals of Botany  2006;97(5):731-738.
• Background and Aims Global warming is gaining significance as a threat to natural and managed ecosystems since temperature is one of the major environmental factors affecting plant productivity. Hence, the effects of moderate temperature increase on the growth and development of the tomato plant (Lycopersicon esculentum) were investigated.
• Methods Plants were grown at 32/26 °C as a moderately elevated temperature stress (METS) treatment or at 28/22 °C (day/night temperatures) as a control with natural light conditions. Vegetative growth and reproductive development as well as sugar content and metabolism, proline content and translocation in the androecium were investigated.
• Key Results METS did not cause a significant change in biomass, the number of flowers, or the number of pollen grains produced, but there was a significant decrease in the number of fruit set, pollen viability and the number of pollen grains released. Glucose and fructose contents in the androecium (i.e. all stamens from one flower) were generally higher in the control than METS, but sucrose was higher in METS. Coincidently, the mRNA transcript abundance of acid invertase in the androecium was decreased by METS. Proline contents in the androecium were almost the same in the control and METS, while the mRNA transcript level of proline transporter 1, which expresses specifically at the surface of microspores, was significantly decreased by METS.
• Conclusions The research indicated that failure of tomato fruit set under a moderately increased temperature above optimal is due to the disruption of sugar metabolism and proline translocation during the narrow window of male reproductive development.
doi:10.1093/aob/mcl037
PMCID: PMC2803419  PMID: 16497700
Lycopersicon esculentum; moderately elevated temperature stress; microsporogenesis; mean daily temperature; fruit set; pollen release; male reproductive development; tapetum; hexose; sucrose; acid invertase; proline transporter
2.  Pharmacological targeting of long QT mutant sodium channels. 
Journal of Clinical Investigation  1997;99(7):1714-1720.
The congenital long QT syndrome (LQTS) is an inherited disorder characterized by a delay in cardiac cellular repolarization leading to cardiac arrhythmias and sudden death often in young people. One form of the disease (LQT3) involves mutations in the voltage-gated cardiac sodium channel. The potential for targeted suppression of the LQT defect was explored by heterologous expression of mutant channels in cultured human cells. Kinetic and steady state analysis revealed an enhanced apparent affinity for the predominantly charged, primary amine compound, mexiletine. The affinity of the mutant channels in the inactivated state was similar to the wild type (WT) channels (IC50 approximately 15-20 microM), but the late-opening channels were inhibited at significantly lower concentrations (IC50 = 2-3 microM) causing a preferential suppression of the late openings. The targeting of the defective behavior of the mutant channels has important implications for therapeutic intervention in this disease. The results provide insights for the selective suppression of the mutant phenotype by very low concentrations of drug and indicate that mexiletine equally suppresses the defect in all three known LQT3 mutants.
PMCID: PMC507992  PMID: 9120016

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