Journal Article

Up-regulation of Soyasaponin Biosynthesis by Methyl Jasmonate in Cultured Cells of <i>Glycyrrhiza glabra</i>

Hiroaki Hayashi, Pengyu Huang and Kenichiro Inoue

in Plant and Cell Physiology

Published on behalf of Japanese Society of Plant Physiologists

Volume 44, issue 4, pages 404-411
Published in print April 2003 | ISSN: 0032-0781
Published online April 2003 | e-ISSN: 1471-9053 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/pcp/pcg054
Up-regulation of Soyasaponin Biosynthesis by Methyl Jasmonate in Cultured Cells of Glycyrrhiza glabra

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Exogenously applied methyl jasmonate (MeJA) stimulated soyasaponin biosynthesis in cultured cells of Glycyrrhiza glabra (common licorice). mRNA level and enzyme activity of β-amyrin synthase (bAS), an oxidosqualene cyclase (OSC) situated at the branching point for oleanane-type triterpene saponin biosynthesis, were up-regulated by MeJA, whereas those of cycloartenol synthase, an OSC involved in sterol biosynthesis, were relatively constant. Two mRNAs of squalene synthase (SQS), an enzyme common to both triterpene and sterol biosyntheses, were also up-regulated by MeJA. In addition, enzyme activity of UDP-glucuronic acid: soyasapogenol B glucuronosyltransferase, an enzyme situated at a later step of soyasaponin biosynthesis, was also up-regulated by MeJA. Accumulations of bAS and two SQS mRNAs were not transient but lasted for 7 d after exposure to MeJA, resulting in the high-level accumulation (more than 2% of dry weight cells) of soyasaponins in cultured licorice cells. In contrast, bAS and SQS mRNAs were coordinately down-regulated by yeast extract, and mRNA accumulation of polyketide reductase, an enzyme involved in 5-deoxyflavonoid biosynthesis in cultured licorice cells, was induced transiently by yeast extract and MeJA, respectively.

Keywords: Key words: Glycyrrhiza glabra — Licorice — Methyl jasmonate — Oxidosqualene cyclase — Triterpene saponin.; Abbreviations: bAS β-amyrin synthase; Triterpene synthase; DIG, digoxigenin; JA, jasmonate; LUS, lupeol synthase; MeJA, methyl jasmonate; OSC, oxidosqualene cyclase; PKR, polyketide reductase; SQS, squalene synthase; UGT, UDP-glucuronic acid: soyasapogenol B glucuronosyltransferase.

Journal Article.  5020 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Biochemistry ; Molecular and Cell Biology ; Plant Sciences and Forestry

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