Biotech Updates

OsAlaAT1 Gene and its Role in the Regulation of Starch Storage in Rice Endosperm

October 7, 2015

Alteration of storage substances in rice leads to floury endosperm. Since floury mutants have physical attributes beneficial for milling, identification and characterization of those mutants are valuable. Jungil Yang of Kyung Hee University in South Korea, together with colleagues, identified a floury endosperm mutant caused by a T-DNA insertion in Oryza sativa alanine-aminotransferase1 (OsAlaAT1).

Analysis found that OsAlaAT1 is predominantly expressed in developing seeds during active starch synthesis and catalyzes the conversion of pyruvate to alanine. Further analysis also revealed that OsAlaAT1 expression is induced by low oxygen conditions.

The osalaat1 mutant exhibited less amylose while its amylopectin is structurally altered. Expression of the starch synthesis genes GPases, OsSSI, OsSSIIa, and OsPPDKB also decreased in the mutant, suggesting the role of OsAlaAT1 in starch synthesis in developing seeds under low concentrations of oxygen.

To learn more about the study, read the article in Plant Science.