Silencing of the gibberellin receptor homolog, CsGID1a, affects locule formation in cucumber (Cucumis sativus) fruit

Bin Liu, Xingwang Liu, Sen Yang, Chunhua Chen, Shudan Xue, Yanling Cai, Dandan Wang, Shuai Yin, Xinshuang Gai, Huazhong Ren
New Phytologist 2016, 210 (2): 551-63
Gibberellins are phytohormones with many roles, including the regulation of fruit development. However, little is known about the relationship between GA perception and fleshy fruit ontogeny, and particularly locule formation. We characterized the expression of cucumber (Cucumis sativus) GA receptor gene (CsGID1a) using quantitative real-time PCR, in situ hybridization and a promoter::β-glucuronidase (GUS) assay. CsGID1a-RNAi cucumber fruits were observed by dissecting microscope, scanning electron microscopy and transmission electron microscopy. Finally, genome-wide gene expression in young fruits from a control and the RNAi line was compared using a digital gene expression (DGE) analysis approach. The expression pattern of CsGID1a was found to be closely correlated with fruit locule formation, and silencing CsGID1a in cucumber resulted in fruits with abnormal carpels and locules. Overexpression of CsGID1a in the Arabidopsis thaliana double mutant (gid1a gid1c) resulted in 'cucumber locule-like' fruits. The DGE analysis suggested that expression of genes related to auxin synthesis and transport, as well as the cell cycle, was altered in CsGID1a-RNAi fruits, a result that was supported by comparing the auxin content and cellular structures of the control and transgenic fruits. This study demonstrates a previously uncharacterized GA signaling pathway that is essential for cucumber fruit locule formation.


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