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Electronic Journal of Biotechnology

On-line version ISSN 0717-3458

Abstract

MESTANZA, Camilo; RIEGEL, Ricardo; SILVA, Herman  and  VASQUEZ, Santiago C. Characterization of the acetohydroxyacid synthase multigene family in the tetraploide plant Chenopodium quinoa. Electron. J. Biotechnol. [online]. 2015, vol.18, n.6, pp.393-398. ISSN 0717-3458.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ejbt.2015.07.003.

Background Currently, the technology called Clearfield® is used in the development of crops resistant to herbicides that inhibit the enzyme acetohydroxy acid synthase (AHAS, EC 2.2.1.6). AHAS is the first enzyme of the biosynthetic pathway that produces the branched-chain of the essential amino acids valine, leucine, and isoleucine. Therefore, multiple copies of the AHAS gene might be of interest for breeding programs targeting herbicide resistance. In this work, the characterization of the AHAS gene was accomplished for the Chenopodium quinoa Regalona-Baer cultivar. Cloning, sequencing, and Southern blotting were conducted to determine the number of gene copies. Results The presence of multiple copies of the AHAS gene as has been shown previously in several other species is described. Six copies of the AHAS gene were confirmed with Southern blot analyses. CqHAS1 and CqAHAS2 variants showed the highest homology with AHAS mRNA sequences found in the NR Database. A third copy, CqAHAS3, shared similar fragments with both CqAHAS1 and CqAHAS2, suggesting duplication through homeologous chromosomes pairing. Conclusions The presence of multiple copies of the gene AHAS shows that gene duplication is a common feature in polyploid species during evolution. In addition, to our knowledge, this is the first report of the interaction of sub-genomes in quinoa.

Keywords : Acetohydroxyacid synthase; Acetolactate synthase; Chenopodium quinoa; Homeologous pairing; Gene duplication.

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