A metabolic gene cluster in the wheat W1 and the barley Cer-cqu loci determines beta-diketone biosynthesis and glaucousness

A - Papers appearing in refereed journals

Hen-Avivi, S., Savin, O., Racovita, R. C., Lee, W-S., Adamski, N. M., Malitsky, S., Almekias-Siegl, E., Levy, M., Vautrin, S., Berges, H., Friedlander, G., Kartvelishvily, E., Ben-Zvi, G., Alkan, N., Uauy, C., Kanyuka, K., Jetter, R., Distelfeld, A. and Aharoni, A. 2016. A metabolic gene cluster in the wheat W1 and the barley Cer-cqu loci determines beta-diketone biosynthesis and glaucousness. The Plant Cell. 28 (6), pp. 1440-1460.

AuthorsHen-Avivi, S., Savin, O., Racovita, R. C., Lee, W-S., Adamski, N. M., Malitsky, S., Almekias-Siegl, E., Levy, M., Vautrin, S., Berges, H., Friedlander, G., Kartvelishvily, E., Ben-Zvi, G., Alkan, N., Uauy, C., Kanyuka, K., Jetter, R., Distelfeld, A. and Aharoni, A.
Abstract

The glaucous appearance of wheat (Triticum aestivum) and barley (Hordeum vulgare) plants, that is the light bluish-gray look of flag leaf, stem, and spike surfaces, results from deposition of cuticular β-diketone wax on their surfaces; this phenotype is associated with high yield, especially under drought conditions. Despite extensive genetic and biochemical characterization, the molecular genetic basis underlying the biosynthesis of β-diketones remains unclear. Here, we discovered that the wheat W1 locus contains a metabolic gene cluster mediating β-diketone biosynthesis. The cluster comprises genes encoding proteins of several families including type-III polyketide synthases, hydrolases, and cytochrome P450s related to known fatty acid hydroxylases. The cluster region was identified in both genetic and physical maps of glaucous and glossy tetraploid wheat, demonstrating entirely different haplotypes in these accessions. Complementary evidence obtained through gene silencing in planta and heterologous expression in bacteria supports a model for a β-diketone biosynthesis pathway involving members of these three protein families. Mutations in homologous genes were identified in the barley eceriferum mutants defective in β-diketone biosynthesis, demonstrating a gene cluster also in the β-diketone biosynthesis Cer-cqu locus in barley. Hence, our findings open new opportunities to breed major cereal crops for surface features that impact yield and stress response.

Year of Publication2016
JournalThe Plant Cell
Journal citation28 (6), pp. 1440-1460
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.1105/tpc.16.00197
PubMed ID27225753
PubMed Central IDPMC4944414
Open accessPublished as bronze (free) open access
FunderBiotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council
Funder project or codeWheat
[20:20 Wheat] Protecting yield potential of wheat
Output statusPublished
Publication dates
Online25 May 2016
Publication process dates
Accepted25 May 2016
Copyright licensePublisher copyright
PublisherAmerican Society of Plant Biologists (ASPB)
ISSN1532298X

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