Introduction of the cDNA for Arabidopsis glycerol-3-phosphate acyltransferase (GPAT) confers unsaturation of fatty acids and chilling tolerance of photosynthesis on rice

Shuji Yokoi, Sho Ichi Higashi, Sachie Kishitani, Norio Murata, Kinya Toriyama

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

58 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The chilling sensitivity of several plant species is closely correlated with the levels of unsaturation of fatty acids in the phosphatidylglycerol (PG) of chloroplast membranes. Plants with a high proportion of unsaturated fatty acids, such as Arabidopsis thaliana, are resistant to chilling, whereas species like squash with only a low proportion are rather sensitive to chilling. The glycerol-3-phosphate O-acyltransferase (GPAT) enzyme of chloroplasts plays an important role in determining the levels of PG fatty acid desaturation. A cDNA for oleate-selective GPAT of Arabidopsis under the control of a maize Ubiquitin promoter was introduced into rice (Oryza sativa L.) using the Agrobacterium-mediated gene transfer method. The levels of unsaturated fatty acids in the phosphatidylglycerol of transformed rice leaves were found to be 28% higher than that of untransformed controls. The net photosynthetic rate of leaves of transformed rice plants was 20% higher than that of the wild type at 17 °C. Thus, introduction of cDNA for the Arabidopsis GPAT causes greater unsaturation of fatty acids and confers chilling tolerance of photosynthesis on rice.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)269-275
Number of pages7
JournalMolecular Breeding
Volume4
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1998 Jan 1

Keywords

  • Chilling tolerance
  • Fatty acid composition
  • Glycerol-3-phosphate acyltransferase
  • Oryza sativa L.
  • Phosphatidylglycerol
  • Transformation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Genetics
  • Plant Science

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