Plant Molecular Biology Reporter

, Volume 31, Issue 5, pp 1184–1191 | Cite as

Molecular Characterization and Defoliation-Induced Expression of a Sucrose Transporter LcSUT1 Gene in Sheep Grass (Leymus chinensis)

  • Man Su
  • Xiaoxia Li
  • Xiaofeng Li
  • Liqin Cheng
  • Dongmei Qi
  • Shuangyan ChenEmail author
  • Gongshe LiuEmail author
Brief Communication


Sucrose is a major photosynthetic product in plants’ leaves. Long-distance transport of sucrose requires sucrose transporter (SUT) to perform loading and unloading functions. In this study, a sucrose transporter gene LcSUT1 was cloned from sheep grass (Leymus chinensis (Trin.) Tzvel), a perennial grass of Gramineae: Poaceae. Bioinformatics analysis showed that the gene product LcSUT1 consisting of 12 predicted transmembrane domains and 11 loops belongs to the SUT1 clade. Heterologous expression of LcSUT1 in yeast proved that it was a functional sucrose transporter. Tissue-specific expression analysis showed that LcSUT1 was highly expressed in leaf and leaf sheath. The expression level of LcSUT1 was significantly up-regulated in leaf sheath after defoliation, but was not induced by wound signal. Furthermore, the level of LcSUT1 expression increased in callus, a model sink tissue, when grew on N6 medium without sucrose. Taken together, our results revealed a novel mechanism in which the increased expression of LcSUT1 in leaf sheaths after defoliation was caused by sucrose starvation rather than by wound signal.


Sucrose transporter Molecular characterization Sheep grass Sucrose starvation Defoliation 



Sucrose transporter


Major facilitator superfamily


DNA complementary to RNA


Coding sequence


Open reading frame




Methyl jasmonate


Reverse transcriptase PCR


Rapid amplification of cDNA ends


Quantitative RT-PCR



We would like to thank Professor Richard Wang at Forage & Range Research Laboratory of Utah State University for his critical reading of the manuscript and Dr. W.B. Frommer for his kind supply of the yeast strain SUSY7/ura3, the vector pDR196, and PDR196-StSUT1. This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (31070302), the Project of Ningxia Agricultural Comprehensive Development Office (NNTK-11-04; NTKJ-2013-03 (1)), the Knowledge Innovation Program of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (KSCX2-EW-B-05), and National High Technology Research and Development Program of China (“863”, 2011AA100209).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Key Laboratory of Plant Resources, Institute of BotanyChinese Academy of SciencesBeijingPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Graduate University of Chinese Academy of SciencesBeijingPeople’s Republic of China

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