Integrated metabolite and gene expression profiling of the isoprenoid regulatory network in de-etiolated rice seedlings upon exposure to light

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Light is an essential regulator of many developmental processes in higher plants. We previously investigated the effect of rice OsHDR1/2 and OsIPPI1/2 genes on the biosynthesis of chlorophylls, carotenoids, and phytosterols in 14-day-old etiolated rice leaves during de-etiolation. However, little is known about the effect of other isoprenoid biosynthesis genes on the corresponding metabolites during the de-etiolation of etiolated rice leaves. Here, we demonstrated that the levels of α-tocopherol were significantly increased in de-etiolated rice leaves whereas the levels of several primary metabolites, including a number of amino acids, organic acids and sugars, decreased. The expression analysis of isoprenoid biosynthesis genes revealed that the coordinated expression of the MEP pathway, chlorophyll, carotenoid and tocopherol pathway genes mirrored the changes in the levels of the corresponding metabolites during de-etiolation. We further extended our work to elucidate the underpinning mechanistic basis of coordinated light-responsive gene expression during the de-etiolation process, specifically the role of light-responsive cis-regulatory motifs in the promoter region of these genes. In silico promoter analysis identified the light-responsive cis-regulatory elements present in all the promoter regions of each light-regulated gene, thus providing an important link between observed phenotype during de-etiolation and the molecular machinery controlling expression of these genes.
Original languageEnglish
JournalPhysiologia Plantarum
Publication statusSubmitted - 10 Dec 2020

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