J Integr Plant Biol. ›› 2012, Vol. 54 ›› Issue (7): 486-499.DOI: 10.1111/j.1744-7909.2012.01132.x

• Molecular Physiology • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Co-expression Analysis Identifies CRC and AP1 the Regulator of Arabidopsis Fatty Acid Biosynthesis

Xinxin Han, Linlin Yin and Hongwei Xue*   

  1. National Key Laboratory of Plant Molecular Genetics, Institute of Plant Physiology and Ecology, Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 20032 Shanghai, China
  • Received:2012-04-08 Accepted:2012-05-20 Published:2012-06-07
  • About author:*Corresponding author Tel: +86 21 5492 4059; Fax: +86 21 5492 4060; Email: hwxue@sibs.ac.cn


Fatty acids (FAs) play crucial rules in signal transduction and plant development, however, the regulation of FA metabolism is still poorly understood. To study the relevant regulatory network, fifty-eight FA biosynthesis genes including de novo synthases, desaturases and elongases were selected as “guide genes” to construct the co-expression network. Calculation of the correlation between all Arabidopsis thaliana (L.) genes with each guide gene by Arabidopsis co-expression dating mining tools (ACT) identifies 797 candidate FA-correlated genes. Gene ontology (GO) analysis of these co-expressed genes showed they are tightly correlated to photosynthesis and carbohydrate metabolism, and function in many processes. Interestingly, 63 transcription factors (TFs) were identified as candidate FA biosynthesis regulators and 8 TF families are enriched. Two TF genes, CRC and AP1, both correlating with 8 FA guide genes, were further characterized. Analyses of the ap1 and crc mutant showed the altered total FA composition of mature seeds. The contents of palmitoleic acid, stearic acid, arachidic acid and eicosadienoic acid are decreased, whereas that of oleic acid is increased in ap1 and crc seeds, which is consistent with the qRT-PCR analysis revealing the suppressed expression of the corresponding guide genes. In addition, yeast one-hybrid analysis and electrophoretic mobility shift assay (EMSA) revealed that CRC can bind to the promoter regions of KCS7 and KCS15, indicating that CRC may directly regulate FA biosynthesis.

Key words: Fatty acid, Arabidopsis, AP1, CRC, co-expression analysis

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