Induction of differential flower pigmentation patterns by RNAi using promoters with distinct tissue-specific activity
We attempted to evaluate the effects of promoters on flower color modification by RNA interference (RNAi). An inverted repeat of a tobacco chalcone synthase (CHS) fragment was used as a trigger under control of three different promoters and transformed into tobacco plants. The flowers of CaMV35S:CHSir displayed a completely white color, whereas those of Agrobacterium rhizogenes rolC:CHSir kept slight pigmentation. On the other hand, gentian GtCHS:CHSir showed decreased pigmentation in the tip only but not at the base of the petal limbs, which resulted in the appearance of bicolor-like flowers. The observed suppression of flower pigmentation corresponded with tissue-specificity of each promoter activity determined by histochemical GUS assay using transgenic tobacco plants with each promoter–GUS construct. These results demonstrate for the first time that RNAi-mediated silencing can be used to produce novel-colored flowers with high horticultural value.
KeywordsAnthocyanin Bicolor Flower color pattern RNAi Tissue-specific promoter Tobacco
Cauliflower mosaic virus
Small interference RNA
We thank Y. Abe, Y. Kakizaki, A. Kubota, R. Takahashi, and A. Oikawa for their technical assistance.
- Davuluri GR, van Tuinen A, Fraser PD, Manfredonia A, Newman R, Burgess D, Brummell DA, King SR, Palys J, Uhlig J, Bramley PM, Pennings HM, Bowler C (2005) Fruit-specific RNAi-mediated suppression of DET1 enhances carotenoid and flavonoid content in tomatoes. Nat Biotechnol 23:890–895PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Hannon GJ (2003) RNAi: a guide to gene silencing. Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press, New YorkGoogle Scholar
- Nakamura N, Fukuchi-Mizutani M, Miyazaki K, Suzuki K, Tanaka Y (2006) RNAi suppression of the anthocyanidin synthase gene in Torenia hybrida yields white flowers with higher frequency and better stability than antisense and sense suppression. Plant Biotechnol 23:13–18Google Scholar
- Nakatsuka T, Abe Y, Kakizaki Y, Yamamura S, Nishihara M (2007) Production of red-flowered plants by genetic engineering of multiple flavonoid biosynthetic genes. Plant Cell Rep (in press)Google Scholar
- Nishihara M, Nakatsuka T, Hosokawa K, Yokoi T, Abe Y, Mishiba K, Yamamura S (2006) Dominant inheritance of white-flowered and herbicide-resistant traits in trangenic gentian plants. Plant Biotechnol 23:25–31Google Scholar
- Ohta S, Mita S, Hattori T, Nakamura K (1990) Construction and expression in tobacco of a β-glucuronidase (GUS) reporter gene containing an intron within the coding sequence. Plant Cell Physiol 31:805–813Google Scholar
- Schijlen EG, de Vos CH, Martens S, Jonker HH, Rosin FM, Molthoff JW, Tikunov YM, Angenent GC, van Tunen AJ, Bovy AG (2007) RNAi silencing of chalcone synthase, the first step in the flavonoid biosynthesis pathway, leads to parthenocarpic tomato fruits. Plant Physiol 144:1520–1530PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar