Covisualization by computational optical-sectioning microscopy of integrin and associated proteins at the cell membrane of living onion protoplasts

Protoplasma. 1996;194(3-4):215-30. doi: 10.1007/BF01882029.


Using higher-resolution wide-field computational optical-sectioning fluorescence microscopy, the distribution of antigens recognized by antibodies against animal beta 1 integrin, fibronectin, and vitronectin has been visualized at the outer surface of enzymatically protoplasted onion epidermis cells and in depectinated cell wall fragments. On the protoplast all three antigens are colocalized in an array of small spots, as seen in raw images, in Gaussian filtered images, and in images restored by two different algorithms. Fibronectin and vitronectin but not beta 1 integrin antigenicities colocalize as puncta in comparably prepared and processed images of the wall fragments. Several control visualizations suggest considerable specifity of antibody recognition. Affinity purification of onion cell extract with the same anti-integrin used for visualization has yielded protein that separates in SDS-PAGE into two bands of about 105-110 and 115-125 kDa. These bands are again recognized by the visualization antibody, which was raised against the extracellular domain of chicken beta 1 integrin, and are also recognized by an antibody against the intracellular domain of chicken beta 1 integrin. Because beta 1 integrin is a key protein in numerous animal adhesion sites, it appears that the punctate distribution of this protein in the cell membranes of onion epidermis represents the adhesion sites long known to occur in cells of this tissue. Because vitronectin and fibronection are matrix proteins that bind to integrin in animals, the punctate occurrence of antigenically similar proteins both in the wall (matrix) and on enzymatically prepared protoplasts reinforces the concept that onion cells have adhesion sites with some similarity to certain kinds of adhesion sites in animals.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Binding Sites, Antibody / immunology
  • Cell Adhesion
  • Cell Membrane
  • Cell Wall / immunology
  • Fibronectins / analysis*
  • Fibronectins / metabolism
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted
  • Integrins / analysis
  • Integrins / metabolism
  • Microscopy, Fluorescence
  • Onions / cytology
  • Onions / immunology*
  • Onions / metabolism
  • Plant Epidermis / cytology*
  • Plant Epidermis / immunology
  • Plant Epidermis / metabolism
  • Plant Proteins / analysis
  • Plant Proteins / metabolism
  • Protoplasts / immunology
  • Protoplasts / metabolism
  • Signal Transduction / physiology*
  • Vitronectin / analysis*
  • Vitronectin / metabolism


  • Fibronectins
  • Integrins
  • Plant Proteins
  • Vitronectin