3 years ago

Overexpression of <i>Arabidopsis thaliana</i> brassinosteroid-related acyltransferase 1 gene induces brassinosteroid-deficient phenotypes in creeping bentgrass

Jeong-Il Kim, Jeehee Roh, Keya Ganguly, Young Soon Kim, Ildoo Hwang, Seong-Ki Kim, Ok-Jin Hwang, Yun-Jeong Han
Brassinosteroids (BRs) are naturally occurring steroidal hormones that play diverse roles in various processes during plant growth and development. Thus, genetic manipulation of endogenous BR levels might offer a way of improving the agronomic traits of crops, including plant architecture and stress tolerance. In this study, we produced transgenic creeping bentgrass (Agrostis stolonifera L.) overexpressing a BR-inactivating enzyme, Arabidopsis thaliana BR-related acyltransferase 1 (AtBAT1), which is known to catalyze the conversion of BR intermediates to inactive acylated conjugates. After putative transgenic plants were selected using herbicide resistance assay, genomic integration of the AtBAT1 gene was confirmed by genomic PCR and Southern blot analysis, and transgene expression was validated by northern blot analysis. The transgenic creeping bentgrass plants exhibited BR-deficient phenotypes, including reduced plant height with shortened internodes (i.e., semi-dwarf), reduced leaf growth rates with short, wide, and thick architecture, high chlorophyll contents, decreased numbers of vascular bundles, and large lamina joint bending angles (i.e., erect leaves). Subsequent analyses showed that the transgenic plants had significantly reduced amounts of endogenous BR intermediates, including typhasterol, 6-deoxocastasterone, and castasterone. Moreover, the AtBAT1 transgenic plants displayed drought tolerance as well as delayed senescence. Therefore, the results of the present study demonstrate that overexpression of an Arabidopsis BR-inactivating enzyme can reduce the endogenous levels of BRs in creeping bentgrass resulting in BR-deficient phenotypes, indicating that the AtBAT1 gene from a dicot plant is also functional in the monocot crop.

Publisher URL: http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article

DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0187378

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