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Genetics and Molecular Biology

Print version ISSN 1415-4757


LEI, Wei; TANG, Shao-Hu; LUO, Ke-Ming  and  SUN, Min. Molecular cloning and expression profiling of a chalcone synthase gene from hairy root cultures of Scutellaria viscidula Bunge. Genet. Mol. Biol. [online]. 2010, vol.33, n.2, pp.285-291.  Epub Apr 23, 2010. ISSN 1415-4757.

A cDNA encoding chalcone synthase (CHS), the key enzyme in flavonoid biosynthesis, was isolated from hairy root cultures of Scutellaria viscidula Bunge by rapid amplification of cDNA ends (RACE). The full-length cDNA of S. viscidula CHS, designated as Svchs (GenBank accession no. EU386767), was 1649 bp with a 1170 bp open reading frame (ORF) that corresponded to a deduced protein of 390 amino acid residues, a calculated molecular mass of 42.56 kDa and a theoretical isoelectric point (pI) of 5.79. Multiple sequence alignments showed that SvCHS shared high homology with CHS from other plants. Functional analysis in silico indicated that SvCHS was a hydrophilic protein most likely associated with intermediate metabolism. The active sites of the malonyl-CoA binding motif, coumaroyl pocket and cyclization pocket in CHS of Medicago sativa were also found in SvCHS. Molecular modeling indicated that the secondary structure of SvCHS contained mainly α-helixes and random coils. Phylogenetic analysis showed that SvCHS was most closely related to CHS from Scutellaria baicalensis. In agreement with its function as an elicitor-responsive gene, the expression of Svchs was induced and coordinated by methyl jasmonate. To our knowledge, this is the first report to describe the isolation and expression of a gene from S. viscidula.

Keywords : chalcone synthase gene; methyl jasmonate; molecular cloning; Scutellaria viscidula Bunge.

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