Zheng, K. et al., 2016. Scientific Reports

Characterization of DWARF14 genes in Populus

Kaijie Zheng, Xiaoping Wang, Deborah A. Weighill, Hao-Bo Guo, Meng Xie, Yongil Yang, Jun Yang, Shucai Wang, Daniel A. Jacobson, Hong Guo, Wellington Muchero, Gerald A. Tuskan, and Jin-Gui Chen
15 February 2016,  Scientific Reports 6: 21593; doi: 10.1038/srep21593


Strigolactones are a new class of plant hormones regulating shoot branching and symbiotic interactions with arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi. Studies of branching mutants in herbaceous plants have identified several key genes involved in strigolactone biosynthesis or signaling. The strigolactone signal is perceived by a member of the α/β-fold hydrolase superfamily, known as DWARF14 (D14). However, little is known about D14 genes in the woody perennial plants. Here we report the identification of D14 homologs in the model woody plant Populus trichocarpa. We showed that there are two D14 homologs in P. trichocarpa, designated as PtD14a and PtD14b that are over 95% similar at the amino acid level. Expression analysis indicated that the transcript level of PtD14a is generally more abundant than that of PtD14b. However, only PtD14a was able to complement Arabidopsis d14 mutants, suggesting that PtD14a is the functional D14 ortholog. Amino acid alignment and structural modeling revealed substitutions of several highly conserved amino acids in the PtD14b protein including a phenylalanine near the catalytic triad of D14 proteins. This study lays a foundation for further characterization of strigolactone pathway and its functions in the woody perennial plants.


Zheng, K., X. Wang, D. A. Weighill, H.-B. Guo, M. Xie, Y. Yang, J. Yang, S. Wang, D. A. Jacobson, H. Guo, W. Muchero, G. A. Tuskan and J.-G. Chen (2016). “Characterization of DWARF14 Genes in Populus.” Scientific Reports 6: 21593 (2016) doi:10.1038/srep21593