The high accumulation of a recombinant protein in rice endosperm causes endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress and in turn dramatically affects endogenous storage protein expression, protein body morphology and seed phenotype. To elucidate the molecular mechanisms underlying these changes in transgenic rice seeds, we analyzed the expression profiles of endogenous storage proteins, ER stress-related and programmed cell death (PCD)-related genes in transgenic lines with different levels of Oryza sativa recombinant alpha antitrypsin (OsrAAT) expression. The results indicated that OsrAAT expression induced the ER stress and that the strength of the ER stress was dependent on OsrAAT expression levels. It in turn induced upregulation of the expression of the ER stress response genes and downregulation of the expression of the endogenous storage protein genes in rice endosperm. Further experiments showed that the ER stress response upregulated the expression of PCD-related genes to disturb the rice endosperm development and induced pre-mature PCD. As consequence, it resulted in decrease of grain weight and size. The mechanisms for the detriment seed phenotype in transgenic lines with high accumulation of the recombinant protein were elucidated.
Plant Molecular Biology – Springer Journals
Published: Apr 8, 2013
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