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      The kiwifruit lycopene beta-cyclase plays a significant role in carotenoid accumulation in fruit

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          Abstract

          The composition of carotenoids, along with anthocyanins and chlorophyll, accounts for the distinctive range of colour found in the Actinidia (kiwifruit) species. Lutein and beta-carotene are the most abundant carotenoids found during fruit development, with beta-carotene concentration increasing rapidly during fruit maturation and ripening. In addition, the accumulation of beta-carotene and lutein is influenced by the temperature at which harvested fruit are stored. Expression analysis of carotenoid biosynthetic genes among different genotypes and fruit developmental stages identified Actinidia lycopene beta-cyclase ( LCY-β) as the gene whose expression pattern appeared to be associated with both total carotenoid and beta-carotene accumulation. Phytoene desaturase ( PDS) expression was the least variable among the different genotypes, while zeta carotene desaturase ( ZDS), beta-carotene hydroxylase ( CRH-β), and epsilon carotene hydroxylase ( CRH-ϵ) showed some variation in gene expression. The LCY-β gene was functionally tested in bacteria and shown to convert lycopene and delta-carotene to beta-carotene and alpha-carotene respectively. This indicates that the accumulation of beta-carotene, the major carotenoid in these kiwifruit species, appears to be controlled by the level of expression of LCY-β gene.

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          Most cited references 44

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          MEGA3: Integrated software for Molecular Evolutionary Genetics Analysis and sequence alignment.

           S. KUMAR (2004)
          With its theoretical basis firmly established in molecular evolutionary and population genetics, the comparative DNA and protein sequence analysis plays a central role in reconstructing the evolutionary histories of species and multigene families, estimating rates of molecular evolution, and inferring the nature and extent of selective forces shaping the evolution of genes and genomes. The scope of these investigations has now expanded greatly owing to the development of high-throughput sequencing techniques and novel statistical and computational methods. These methods require easy-to-use computer programs. One such effort has been to produce Molecular Evolutionary Genetics Analysis (MEGA) software, with its focus on facilitating the exploration and analysis of the DNA and protein sequence variation from an evolutionary perspective. Currently in its third major release, MEGA3 contains facilities for automatic and manual sequence alignment, web-based mining of databases, inference of the phylogenetic trees, estimation of evolutionary distances and testing evolutionary hypotheses. This paper provides an overview of the statistical methods, computational tools, and visual exploration modules for data input and the results obtainable in MEGA.
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            Natural genetic variation in lycopene epsilon cyclase tapped for maize biofortification.

            Dietary vitamin A deficiency causes eye disease in 40 million children each year and places 140 to 250 million at risk for health disorders. Many children in sub-Saharan Africa subsist on maize-based diets. Maize displays considerable natural variation for carotenoid composition, including vitamin A precursors alpha-carotene, beta-carotene, and beta-cryptoxanthin. Through association analysis, linkage mapping, expression analysis, and mutagenesis, we show that variation at the lycopene epsilon cyclase (lcyE) locus alters flux down alpha-carotene versus beta-carotene branches of the carotenoid pathway. Four natural lcyE polymorphisms explained 58% of the variation in these two branches and a threefold difference in provitamin A compounds. Selection of favorable lcyE alleles with inexpensive molecular markers will now enable developing-country breeders to more effectively produce maize grain with higher provitamin A levels.
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              Engineering the provitamin A (beta-carotene) biosynthetic pathway into (carotenoid-free) rice endosperm.

              Rice (Oryza sativa), a major staple food, is usually milled to remove the oil-rich aleurone layer that turns rancid upon storage, especially in tropical areas. The remaining edible part of rice grains, the endosperm, lacks several essential nutrients, such as provitamin A. Thus, predominant rice consumption promotes vitamin A deficiency, a serious public health problem in at least 26 countries, including highly populated areas of Asia, Africa, and Latin America. Recombinant DNA technology was used to improve its nutritional value in this respect. A combination of transgenes enabled biosynthesis of provitamin A in the endosperm.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                J Exp Bot
                jexbot
                exbotj
                Journal of Experimental Botany
                Oxford University Press
                0022-0957
                1460-2431
                September 2009
                2 July 2009
                2 July 2009
                : 60
                : 13
                : 3765-3779
                Affiliations
                [1 ]The New Zealand Institute for Plant and Food Research Limited, Private Bag 92 169, Auckland 1142, New Zealand
                [2 ]The New Zealand Institute for Plant and Food Research Limited, Private Bag 11 030, Palmerston North, New Zealand
                Author notes
                [* ]To whom correspondence should be addressed: E-mail: cdwamena@ 123456hortresearch.co.nz
                Article
                10.1093/jxb/erp218
                2736891
                19574250
                © 2009 The Author(s).

                This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/2.0/uk/) which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

                This paper is available online free of all access charges (see http://jxb.oxfordjournals.org/open_access.html for further details)

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