Structure, expression profile, and evolution of the sucrose synthase gene family in peach (Prunus persica)

  • Chunhua Zhang
  • Mingliang Yu
  • Ruijuan Ma
  • Zhijun Shen
  • Binbin Zhang
  • Nicholas Kibet Korir
Original Paper


Key message

SUS gene family is comprised of six genes in peach, PpSus1 to PpSus6. PpSus1 to PpSus6 were categorized to represent three groups, group I, II, and III. PpSus showed conservative characteristics with Sus in other plants. PpSus exhibited distinct expression patterns in tissues at four development stages.


Sucrose synthase (SUS) has been suggested to play a key role in plant sucrose metabolism with recent studies reporting that a small number of genes encoding different isozymes of Sus exist in most plant species. Despite this, information on genes encoding different isozymes of Sus in peach (Prunus persica) is scanty. In this study, we report the prediction, isolation, structural characteristics, phylogenetic connections and expression outline of six Sus genes in peach (PpSus1 to 6). The six PpSus genes were found distributed across scaffolds 1, 3, 5, 7, and 8. Analysis of the exons/introns revealed that PpSus genes contain multiple introns that range from 11 to 13 and displayed a high degree of conservation with corresponding Sus genes in other plant species. The comparative screening of motifs in PpSus proteins indicated high conservation in terms of number, width and order of motifs among PpSus proteins, which indirectly indicates that the six PpSus proteins are indeed members of the SUS family. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that PpSus2 to PpSus4 belonged to group II of the Sus family, PpSus5 and PpSus6 were clustered into group III, and group I contained only one peach gene (PpSus1) together with members from 10 other plant species. Analysis of expression levels of the six PpSus genes revealed that transcripts of PpSus1 were almost undetectable in leaves and in older phloem, while PpSus2 and PpSus4 were almost undetectable in flowers. The other three PpSus genes appeared differentially expressed in all tissues examined and were detected at different stages of tissue development. The results obtained from this study will be useful in selecting candidate PpSus genes for further functional analysis in the pathway of sucrose metabolism in peach and specifically in characterizing the knockout/knockdown mutants of PpSus genes.


Peach Sucrose synthase Characteristics Phylogenetic analysis Expression pattern 



Days after full bloom


Genome Database for Rosaceae


Gene Structure Display Server


Grand average of hydropathicity


Hidden Markov model




New group


Isoelectric point


Quantitative real-time PCR


The Arabidopsis Information Resource


Sucrose synthase


Untranslated region



This research was financially supported by the Independent Innovation Scientific Research Foundation of Jiangsu Province (No. CX(13)5018) and China Agriculture Research System (No. CARS-31). The authors also thank Prof. Jinggui Fang from Nanjing Agricultural University for providing valuable comments and suggestions for the manuscript.

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.

Supplementary material

11738_2015_1829_MOESM1_ESM.docx (358 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 358 kb)


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Copyright information

© Franciszek Górski Institute of Plant Physiology, Polish Academy of Sciences, Kraków 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Chunhua Zhang
    • 1
  • Mingliang Yu
    • 1
  • Ruijuan Ma
    • 1
  • Zhijun Shen
    • 1
  • Binbin Zhang
    • 1
  • Nicholas Kibet Korir
    • 2
  1. 1.Institute of HorticultureJiangsu Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Jiangsu Key Laboratory for Horticultural Crop Genetic ImprovementNanjingChina
  2. 2.Department of Agricultural Science and TechnologyKenyatta UniversityNairobiKenya

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