Skip to main content

cDNA cloning and characterization of a mannose-binding lectin fromZingiber officinaleRoscoe (ginger) rhizomes


Using RNA extracted fromZingiber officinale rhizomes and primers designed according to the conservative regions of monocot mannose-binding lectins, the full-length cDNA ofZ. officinale agglutinin (ZOA) was cloned by rapid amplification of cDNA ends (RACE). The full-length cDNA ofzoa was 746 bp and contained a 510 bp open reading frame (ORF) encoding a lectin precursor of 169 amino acids with a signal peptide. ZOA was a mannose-binding lectin with three typical mannose-binding sites (QDNY). Semi-quantitative RT-PCR analysis revealed thatzoa expressed in all the tested tissues ofZ. officinale including leaf, root and rhizome, suggesting it to be a constitutively expressing form. ZOA protein was successfully expressed inEscherichia coli with the molecular weight expected. To our knowledge, this is the first mannose-binding lectin cDNA cloned from the family Zingiberaceae. Our results demonstrate that monocot mannose-binding lectins also occur within the family Zingiberaceae

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.



Allium ascalonicum agglutinin


Ananas comosus (pineapple) agglutinin


Amorphophallus konjac agglutinin


Allium porrum agglutinin


Allium sativum agglutinin


Allium ursinum agglutinin


Crinum asiaticum agglutinin


Cymbidium hybrid agglutinin


Epipactis helleborine agglutinin


Gastrodia elata antifungal protein


Galanthus nivalis agglutinin


Listera ovata agglutinin


Narcissus hybrid agglutinin


open reading frame


polymerase chain reaction


rapid amplification of cDNA ends


reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain rection


Typhonium divaricatum agglutinin


Taxus media agglutinin


untranslated region


Zephyrathes grandiflora agglutinin


Zingiber officinale agglutinin


  1. Barre A, Bourne Y, Van Damme E J M, Peumans W J and Rouge P 2001 Mannose-binding plant lectins: different structural scaffolds for a common sugar-recognition process;Biochimie 83 645–651

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  2. Fei J, Liao Z H, Chai Y R, Pang Y Z, Yao J H, Sun X F and Tang K X 2003 Molecular cloning and characterization of a novel mannose-binding lectin gene fromAmorphophallus konjac;Mol. Biol. Rep. 30 177–183

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  3. Haselbeck A, Schickaneder E, Vondereltz H and Hosel W 1990 Structural characterization of glycoprotein carbohydrate chains by using digoxigenin-labeled lectins on blots;Anal. Biochem. 191 25–30

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  4. Hilder V A, Powell K S, Gatehouse A M R and Gatehouse J A 1995 Expression of snowdrop lectin in transgenic tobacco plants results in added protection against aphids;Transgenic Res. 4 18–425

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  5. Kai G Y, Zheng J G, Zhang L, Pang Y Z, Liao Z H, Li Z G, Zhao L X, Sun X F and Tang K X 2003 Molecular cloning of a new lectin gene fromZephyrathes grandiflora;DNA Seq. 14 335–338

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  6. Kai G Y, Zhao L X, Zheng J G, Zhang L, Miao Z Q, Sun X F and Tang K X 2004 Molecular cloning and characterization of a new mannose-binding lectin gene fromTaxus media;J. Biosci. 29 399–407

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  7. Kazok M 1981 An analysis of 5′-noncoding sequence from 699 vertebrate messenger RNAs;Nucleic Acids Res. 9 5233–5252

    Article  Google Scholar 

  8. Laemmli U K 1970 Cleavage of structural proteins during the assembly of the head of bacteriophage T4;Nature (London) 227 680

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  9. Peumans W J and Van Damme E J M 1995 Lectins as plant defense proteins;Plant Physiol. 109 347–352

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  10. Powell K S, Gatehouse AMR, Hilder V A and Gatehouse J A 1993 Antimetabolic effects of plant-lectins and plant and fungal enzymes on the nymphal stages of 2 important rice pests,Nilaparvata lugens andNephotettix cinciteps;Entomol. Exp. Appl. 66 119–126

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  11. Sambrook J, Fritsch E F and Maniatis T 1989Molecular Cloning: A Laboratory Manual, 2nd edition (New York: Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press)

    Google Scholar 

  12. Wang X C, Bauw G, Van Damme E J M, Peumans W J, Chen Z L, Van Montagu M, Angenon G and Dillen W 2001 Gastrodianin-like mannose-binding proteins: a novel class of plant proteins with antifungal properties;Plant J. 25 651–661

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  13. Van Damme E J M, Allen A K and Peumans W J 1987 Isolation and characterization of a lectin with exclusive specificity towards mannose from snowdrop(Galanthus nivalis) bulbs;FEBS Lett. 215 140–144

    Article  Google Scholar 

  14. Van Damme E J M, Declercq N, Claessens F, Hemschoote K, Peeters B and Peumans W J 1991 Molecular-cloning and characterization of multiple isoforms of the snowdrop(Galanthus-nivalis L.) lectin;Planta 186 35–43

    Article  Google Scholar 

  15. Van Damme E J M, Smeets K, Engelborghs I, Aelbers H, Balzarini J, Pusztai A, Van Leuven F, Goldstein I J and Peumans W J 1993 Cloning and characterization of the lectin cDNA clones from onion, shallot and leek;Plant Mol. Biol. 23 365–376

    Article  Google Scholar 

  16. Van Damme E J M, Smeets K, Torrekens S, Van Leuven F and Peumans W J 1994 Characterization and molecular cloning of mannose-binding lectins from theOrchidaceae speciesListera ovata, Epipactis helleborine andCymbidium hybrid;Eur. J. Biochem. 221 769–777

    Article  Google Scholar 

  17. Van Damme E J M, Peumans W J, Barre B and Rouge P 1998 Plant lectins: a composite of several distinct families of structurally and evolutionary related proteins with diverse biological roles;Crit. Rev. Plant Sci. 17 1–112

    Article  Google Scholar 

  18. Van Damme E J M, Astoul C H, Barre A, Rougé P and Peumans W J 2000 Cloning and characterization of a monocot mannose-binding lectin fromCrocus vernus (family Iridaceae);Eur. J. Biochem. 267 5067–5077

    Article  Google Scholar 

  19. von Heijne G 1986 A new method for predicting signal sequence cleavage sites;Nucleic Acids Res. 14 4683–4690

    Article  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information



Corresponding author

Correspondence to Kexuan Tang.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Chen, Z., Kai, G., Liu, X. et al. cDNA cloning and characterization of a mannose-binding lectin fromZingiber officinaleRoscoe (ginger) rhizomes. J. Biosci. 30, 213–220 (2005).

Download citation


  • Mannose-binding lectin
  • RACE
  • Zingiber officinale
  • ZOA