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Silique shattering resistance is one of the most important agricultural traits in oil crop breeding. Seed shedding from siliques prior to and during harvest causes devastating losses in oilseed yield. Lignin biosynthesis in the silique walls is thought to affect silique-shattering resistance in oil crops. Here, we identified and characterized B. napus LATE FLOWERING (BnLATE), which encodes a Cys2/His2-type zinc-finger protein. Heterologous expression of BnLATE under the double enhanced CaMV 35S promoter (D35S) in wild-type Arabidopsis plants resulted in a marked decrease in lignification in the replum, valve layer (carpel) and dehiscence zone. pBnLATE::GUS activity was strong in the yellowing silique walls of transgenic lines. Furthermore, the expression pattern of BnLATE and the lignin content gradient in the silique walls at 48 days after pollination (DAP) of 73290, a B. napus silique shattering-resistant line, are similar to those in transgenic Arabidopsis lines expressing BnLATE. Transcriptome sequencing of the silique walls revealed that genes encoding peroxidases, which polymerize monolignols and lignin in the phenylpropanoid pathway, were down-regulated at least two-fold change in the D35S::BnLATE transgenic lines. pBnLATE::BnLATE transgenic lines were further used to identify the function of BnLATE, and the results showed that lignification in the carpel and dehiscence zone of yellowing silique also remarkably decreased compared with the wild-type control, the silique shattering-resistance and expression pattern of peroxidase genes are very similar to results with D35S::BnLATE. These results suggest that BnLATE is a negative regulator of lignin biosynthesis in the yellowing silique walls, and promotes silique-shattering resistance in B. napus through restraining the polymerization of monolignols and lignin.


Zhangsheng Tao, Yi Huang, Lida Zhang, Xinfa Wang, Guihua Liu, Hanzhong Wang. BnLATE, a Cys2/His2-Type Zinc-Finger Protein, Enhances Silique Shattering Resistance by Negatively Regulating Lignin Accumulation in the Silique Walls of Brassica napus. PloS one. 2017;12(1):e0168046

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PMID: 28081140

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