Transgenic sweetpotato plants overexpressing tocopherol cyclase display enhanced α-tocopherol content and abiotic stress tolerance

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Title
Transgenic sweetpotato plants overexpressing tocopherol cyclase display enhanced α-tocopherol content and abiotic stress tolerance
Author(s)
So-Eun Kim; Chan-Ju Lee; Chang Yoon Ji; Ho Soo Kim; Sul-U Park; Ye-Hoon Lim; W S Park; M J Ahn; X Bian; Y Xie; X Guo; Sang Soo Kwak
Bibliographic Citation
Plant Physiology and Biochemistry, vol. 144, pp. 436-444
Publication Year
2019
Abstract
Oxidative stress caused by reactive oxygen species (ROS) under various environmental stresses significantly reduces plant productivity. Tocopherols (collectively known as vitamin E) are a group of lipophilic antioxidants that protect cellular components against oxidative stress. Previously, we isolated five tocopherol biosynthesis genes from sweetpotato (Ipomoea batatas [L.] Lam) plants, including tocopherol cyclase (IbTC). In this study, we generated transgenic sweetpotato plants overexpressing IbTC under the control of cauliflower mosaic virus (CaMV) 35S promoter (referred to as TC plants) via Agrobacterium-mediated transformation to understand the function of IbTC in sweetpotato. Three transgenic lines (TC2, TC9, and TC11) with high transcript levels of IbTC were selected for further characterization. High performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) analysis revealed that α-tocopherol was the most predominant form of tocopherol in sweetpotato tissues. The content of α-tocopherol was 1.6?3.3-fold higher in TC leaves than in non-transgenic (NT) leaves. No significant difference was observed in the tocopherol content of storage roots between TC and NT plants. Additionally, compared with NT plants, TC plants showed enhanced tolerance to multiple environmental stresses, including salt, drought, and oxidative stresses, and showed consistently higher levels of photosystem II activity and chlorophyll content, indicating abiotic stress tolerance. These results suggest IbTC as a strong candidate gene for the development of sweetpotato cultivars with increased α-tocopherol levels and enhanced abiotic stress tolerance.
Keyword
SweetpotatoIbTCTocopherolSalt stressDrought stressOxidative stress
ISSN
0981-9428
Publisher
Elsevier
DOI
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.plaphy.2019.09.046
Type
Article
Appears in Collections:
Division of Research on National Challenges > Plant Systems Engineering Research > 1. Journal Articles
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