Glycoalkaloids are toxic compounds that are synthesized by many Solanum species. Glycoalkaloid biosynthesis is influenced by plant genetic and environmental conditions. Although many studies have shown that light is an important factor affecting glycoalkaloid biosynthesis, the specific mechanism is currently unknown. Chlorophyll and carotenoid biosynthesis depend on light signal transduction and share some intermediate metabolites with the glycoalkaloid biosynthetic pathway. Here, we used virus-induced gene silencing to silence genes encoding phytoene desaturase (PDS) and magnesium chelatase (CHLI and CHLH) to reduce chlorophyll and carotenoid levels in eggplant leaves. Quantification of carotenoid and chlorophyll levels is analyzed by LC/PDA/APCI/MS and semipolar metabolite profiling by LC/HESI/MS. Notably, the resulting lines showed decreases in glycoalkaloid production. We further found that the expression of some genes involved in the production of glycoalkaloids and other metabolites were suppressed in these silenced lines. Our results indicate that photosynthetic pigment accumulation affects steroidal glycoalkaloid biosynthesis in eggplant leaves. This finding lays the foundation for reducing the levels of endogenous antinutritional compounds in crops.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
Wang, C-C., Sulli, M., & Fu, D-Q. (2017). The role of phytochromes in regulating biosynthesis of sterol glycoalkaloid in eggplant leaves. PLoS One, 12(12), -. [e0189481]. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0189481