Chervin, Christian and Tira-Umphon, Arak and Chatelet, Philippe and Jauneau, Alain and Boss, P.K. and Tesniere, Catherine Ethylene and other stimuli affect expression of the UDP glucose-flavonoid 3-O-glucosyltransferase in non-climacteric grape cells. (2009) Vitis, vol. 48 (n° 1). pp. 11-16. ISSN 0042-7500
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The UDP glucose-flavonoid 3-O-glucoslyltransferase (UFGT) is a key enzyme for anthocyanin biosynthesis and stability, the pigments of red grapes. The understanding of factors affecting expression of this enzyme is important for the control of grape colour. A 1640 bp promoter region of the ufgt gene was cloned and sequenced. The analysis of this sequence revealed seven putative ethylene-responsive cis-elements and other cis-elements related to three major signals known to induce anthocyanin accumulation in plant tissues: light, sugar, and abscisic acid. In order to evaluate the ability of ethylene and other signals to drive expression from the ufgt promoter, we ran transient expression experiments using an anthocyanin rich grape cell culture, with very low green auto-fluorescence. After biolistic bombardment, the cells were treated to test various combinations of the four signals on gfp expression (green fluorescent protein). The comparison of the intensity of fluorescent light accumulated in cells following the various treatments showed that ethylene better stimulates expression of the ufgt promoter in the dark than with light. In addition, results showed that there may be a positive interaction between ethylene and abscisic acid. This system, a promoter of interest driving the gfp expression in cells with low auto-fluorescence, may be a good tool for studies about synergistic or antagonist roles of transcription factors. Moreover, a specific inhibitor of ethylene receptors (1 methylcyclopropene) inhibited ufgt mRNA accumulation in grape berries. This confirms that the ethylene signal is likely a regulator of grape UFGT expression in a non-climacteric fruit.
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