Plant Molecular Biology

, Volume 19, Issue 3, pp 443–453

Cloning and characterisation of an oleosin gene from Brassica napus

  • James S. Keddie
  • Griseldis Hübner
  • Stephen P. Slocombe
  • R. Paul Jarvis
  • Ian Cummins
  • Eira-wyn Edwards
  • Charles H. Shaw
  • Denis J. Murphy
Research Articles


The sequence of an oleosin gene from Brassica napus has been determined. This gene contains a single intron of 437 bp and encodes a polypeptide of 195 amino acids. The oleosin gene product has an estimated molecular mass of 21.5 kDa and consists of a highly hydrophobic central domain flanked by relatively polar N- and C-terminal domains. The central domain is highly conserved between all oleosins sequenced to date and contains a run of periodically spaced leucine residues similar to that of a leucine-zipper motif. The gene has been shown to be expressed specifically in the embryo, maximally between 9 and 11 weeks after flowering, i.e. during the seed desiccation stage. Two transcriptional start sites have been mapped to -70 and -21 of the ATG and a putative ABA-responsive element and three repeated motifs have been identified in the promoter. These short promoter sequences could correspond to regulatory elements responsible for embryo-specific gene expression. Up to six genes exist in the oleosin gene family.

Key words

Brassica napus embryogenesis leucine-zipper motif oleosin oil-body protein seed development 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Pulishers 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • James S. Keddie
    • 1
  • Griseldis Hübner
    • 1
  • Stephen P. Slocombe
    • 1
  • R. Paul Jarvis
    • 1
  • Ian Cummins
    • 2
  • Eira-wyn Edwards
    • 2
  • Charles H. Shaw
    • 2
  • Denis J. Murphy
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Brassica and Oilseeds Research, Cambridge LaboratoryJohn Innes Centre for Plant Science ResearchNorwichUK
  2. 2.Department of Biological SciencesUniversity of DurhamDurhamUK

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