J Integr Plant Biol. ›› 2015, Vol. 57 ›› Issue (9): 770-782.DOI: 10.1111/jipb.12319

• Metabolism and Biochemistry • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Expressing an (E)-β-farnesene synthase in the chloroplast of tobacco affects the preference of green peach aphid and its parasitoid

Gen-Ping Wang1,2†, Xiu-Dao Yu2,3†, Jia Fan4, Cheng-She Wang1* and Lan-Qin Xia2*   

  1. 1College of Agronomy, Northwest A&F University/State Key Laboratory of Crop Stress Biology in Arid Areas, Yangling, China
    2Institute of Crop Sciences, the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS), Beijing, China
    3School of Life Science and Technology, Nanyang Normal University, Nanyang, China
    4Institute of Crop Protection, the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS), Beijing, China
  • Received:2014-08-05 Accepted:2014-12-04 Published:2014-12-12
  • About author:These authors contributed equally to the work.
    **Correspondence: E-mail: xialanqin@caas.cn; wangcs2008@126.com


(E)-β-Farnesene (EβF) synthase catalyses the production of EβF, which for many aphids is the main or only component of the alarm pheromone causing the repellence of aphids and also functions as a kairomone for aphids' natural enemies. Many plants possess EβF synthase genes and can release EβF to repel aphids. In order to effectively recruit the plant-derived EβF synthase genes for aphid control, by using chloroplast transit peptide (CTP) of the small subunit of Rubisco (rbcS) from wheat (Triticum aestivum L.), we targeted AaβFS1, an EβF synthase gene from sweet wormwood (Artemisia annua L.), to the chloroplast of tobacco to generate CTP+AaβFS1 transgenic lines. The CTP+AaβFS1 transgenic tobacco plants could emit EβF at a level up to 19.25 ng/day per g fresh tissues, 4–12 fold higher than the AaβFS1 transgenic lines without chloroplast targeting. Furthermore, aphid/parasitoid behavioral bioassays demonstrated that the CTP+AaβFS1 transgenic tobacco showed enhanced repellence to green peach aphid (Myzus persicae) and attracted response of its parasitoid Diaeretiella rapae, thus affecting aphid infestation at two trophic levels. These data suggest that the chloroplast is an ideal subcellular compartment for metabolic engineering of plant-derived EβF synthase genes to generate a novel type of transgenic plant emitting an alarm pheromone for aphid control.


Wang GP, Yu XD, Fan J, Wang CS, Xia LQ (2015) Expressing an (E)-b-farnesene synthase in the chloroplast of tobacco affects the preference of green peach aphid and its parasitoid. J Integr Plant Biol 57: 770–782 doi: 10.1111/jipb.12319

Key words: Aphid, chloroplast, Diaeretiella rapae, (E)-β-farnesene synthase, Myzus persicae, tobacco

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