, Volume 233, Issue 5, pp 883-894

Effects of seasonal temperature changes on DkMyb4 expression involved in proanthocyanidin regulation in two genotypes of persimmon (Diospyros kaki Thunb.) fruit

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Persimmon fruits accumulate a large amount of proanthocyanidin (PA). Fruits of the mutant non-astringent (NA) type lose their ability to accumulate PA at an early stage of fruit development, whereas fruits of the normal astringent (A) type sustain PA accumulation until ripening. This allelotype is determined by the genotype of a single ASTRINGENCY (AST) locus. It is possible that the reduction in PA accumulation in NA-type fruits is due to phenological down-regulation of DkMyb4 (a PA regulator) and the resultant down-regulation of structural genes in the PA pathway. In this study, attempts were made to identify the regulatory mechanisms of phenological PA accumulation in A- and NA-type fruits, focusing particularly on the effects of ambient temperature. Continuous cool temperature conditions caused sustained expression of DkMyb4 in NA-type fruits, as well as in A-type fruits, resulting in increased expression of PA pathway genes and PA accumulation. However, the expression of some A/NA phenotypic marker genes was not significantly affected by the cool temperature conditions. In addition, PA composition in NA-type fruits exposed to cool temperatures differed from that in A-type fruits. These results indicate that a cool ambient temperature may have induced DkMyb4 expression and resultant PA accumulation, but did not directly affect the expression of the AST gene.