Polyploidization is a major evolutionary process in eukaryotes. In plants, genetic and epigenetic changes occur rapidly after formation of allopolyploids. Hybridization, rather than genome doubling itself, is considered as the main cause for the resulting differential gene expression. We studied the consequences of genome doubling alone in an autopolyploid model, by comparing two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (2-DE) gels of haploid, diploid, and tetraploid Brassica oleracea cabbages. Two fully homozygous lines, HDEM and RC, as well as two organs, leaf and stem, were studied. For the 558 common spots found present in all the 29 2-DE gels of the experiment, inter-organ and -genotype differences were the major sources of the variation in protein amounts: 41 and 10–13%, respectively. HDEM leaf and stem proteomes were not significantly affected by the ploidy level, since no qualitative variation was detected and since the number of quantitative variations could be due to chance. For RC, no qualitative variations were observed, but a few spots were significantly variable in protein amount. However, the number of inter-ploidy variations was of the same range as the number of intra-ploidy variations. In conclusion, whatever the ploidy level, leaf and stem proteomes remained globally unchanged in both cabbage lines.
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