Identification of a Highly Expressed 3-Hydroxy-3-Methylglutaryl-CoA Reductase Gene in the Root Tissue of Taraxacum kok-saghyz


Kazakh dandelion (Taraxacum kok-saghyz, Tk) is a rubber-producing plant currently being investigated as a source of natural rubber for industrial applications. Like many other isoprenoids, rubber is a downstream product of the mevalonate pathway. The 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-CoA reductase (HMGR) enzyme catalyzes the conversion of 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-CoA to mevalonic acid, a key regulatory step in the MVA pathway. Such regulated steps provide targets for increases in isoprenoid and rubber contents via genetic engineering to increase enzyme activities. In this study, we identify a TkHMGR1 gene that is highly expressed in the roots of Kazakh dandelion, the main tissue where rubber is synthesized and stored. This finding paves the way for further molecular and genetic studies of the TkHMGR1 gene, and its role in rubber biosynthesis in Tk and other rubber-producing plants.

Share and Cite:

Ponciano, G. and Chen, G. (2014) Identification of a Highly Expressed 3-Hydroxy-3-Methylglutaryl-CoA Reductase Gene in the Root Tissue of Taraxacum kok-saghyz. American Journal of Plant Sciences, 5, 3603-3608. doi: 10.4236/ajps.2014.524376.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


[1] Rivano, F., Mattos, C., Cardoso, S., Martinez, M., Ceballos, V., Le Guen, V. and Garcia, D. (2013) Breeding Hevea brasiliensis for Yield, Growth and SALB Resistance for High Disease Environments. Industrial Crops and Products, 44, 659-670.
[2] Fox, J., Castella, J., Ziegler, A. and Westley, S. (2014) Rubber Plantations Expand in Mountainous Southeast Asia: What Are the Consequences for the Environment? Analysis from the East West Center, 114, 1-8.
[3] Van Beilen, J. and Poirier, Y. (2007) Establishment of New Crops for the Production of Natural Rubber. Trends in Biotechnology, 25, 522-529.
[4] Canter, N. (2011) Natural Rubber from Dandelions: A Russian Flower May Hold the Answer to a Worldwide Shortage. Tribology and Lubrication Technology, 67, 14-15.
[5] Hellier, B. (2011) Collecting in Central Asia and the Caucasus: US National Plant Germplasm System Plant Explorations. HortScience, 46, 1438-1439.
[6] Sfeir, N., Chapuset, T., Palu, S., Lancon, F., Amor, A., Garcia, J. and Snoeck, D. (2014) Technical and Economic Feasibility of a Guayule Commodity Chain in Mediterranean Europe. Industrial Crops and Products, 59, 55-62.
[7] Lynen, F. and Henning, U. (1960) Biological Path to Natural Rubber. Angewandte Chemie, 72.
[8] Cornish, K. (2001) Similarities and Differences in Rubber Biochemistry among Plant Species. Phytochemistry, 57, 1123-1134.
[9] Tanaka, Y. (2001) Structural Characterization of Natural Polyisoprenes: Solve the Mystery of Natural Rubber Based on Structural Study. Rubber Chemistry and Technology, 74, 355-375.
[10] Chappell, J. (1995) Biochemistry and Molecular Biology of the Isoprenoid Biosynthetic Pathway in Plants. Annual Review of Plant Physiology and Plant Molecular Biology, 46, 521-547.
[11] Vranova, E., Coman, D. and Gruissem, W. (2013) Network Analysis of the MVA and MEP Pathways for Isoprenoid Synthesis. Annual Review of Plant Biology, 64, 665-700.
[12] Sando, T., Takeno, S., Watanabe, N., Okumoto, H., Kuzuyama, T., Yamashita, A., Hattori, M., Ogasawara, N., Fukusaki, E. and Kobayashi, A. (2008) Cloning and Characterization of the 2-C-methyl-D-erythritol-4-phosphate (MEP) Pathway Genes of the Natural-Rubber Producing Plant, Hevea brasiliensis. Bioscience, Biotechnology and Biochemistry, 72, 2903-2917.
[13] Bach, T. (1986) Hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA Reductase, A Key Enzyme in Phytosterol Synthesis? Lipids, 21, 82-88.
[14] Goldstein, J. and Brown, M. (1990) Regulation of the Mevalonate Pathway. Nature, 343, 425-430.
[15] Hampton, R., Dimster-Denk, D. and Rine, J. (1996) The Biology of HMG-CoA Reductase; the Pros of Contra-Regulation. Trends in Biological Science, 21, 140-145.
[16] Espenshade, P. and Hughes, A. (2007) Regulation of Sterol Synthesis in Eukaryotes. Annual Review of Genetics, 41, 401-427.
[17] Li, W., Liu, W., Wei, H., He, Q., Chen, J., Zhang, B. and Zhu, S. (2014) Species-Specific Expansion of Molecular Evolution of the 3-Hydroxy-3-Methylglutaryl Coenzyme A Reductase (HMGR) Gene Family in Plants. PloS ONE, 9, e94172.
[18] Lumbreras, V., Campos, N. and Boronat, A.(1995) The Use of An Alternative Promoter in the Arabidopsis thaliana HMG1 Gene Generates an Mrna that Encodes a Novel 3-Hydroxy-3-Methylglutaryl Coenzyme A Reductase Isoform with an Extended N-Terminal Region. The Plant Journal, 8, 541-549.
[19] Kondo, K., Uritani, I. and Oba, K. (2003) Induction Mechanism of 3-Hydroxy-3-Methylglutaryl-Coa Reductase in Potato Tuber and Sweet Potato Root Tissues. Biosciences, Biotechnology and Biochemistry, 67, 1007-1017.
[20] Yoshioka, A., Miho, M., Yukie, H. and Noriyuki, D. (1996) Expression of Genes for Phenylalanine Ammonia-Lyase and 3-Hydroxy-3-Methylglutaryl CoA Reductase in Aged Potato Tubers Infected with Phytophthora infestans. Plant Cell Physiology, 37, 81-90.
[21] Dale, S., Arro, M., Becerra, B., Morrice, N., Boronat, A., Hardie, D. and Ferrer, A. (1995) Bacterial Expression of the Catalytic Domain of 3-Hydroxy-3-Methylglutaryl-CoA Reductase (Isoform HMGR1) from Arabidopsis thaliana, and Its Inactivation by Phosphorylation at Ser577 by Brassica oleracea 3-Hydroxy-3-Methylglutaryl-CoA Reductase Kinase. European Journal of Biochemistry, 233, 506-513.
[22] Leivar, P., Antolin-Llovera, M., Ferrero, S., Closa, M., Arro, M., Ferrer, A., Boronat, A. and Campos, N. (2011) Multilevel Control of Arabidopsis 3-Hydroxy-3-Methylglutaryl Coenzyme A Reductase by Protein Phosphatase 2A. The Plant Cell, 23, 1494-1511.
[23] Chye, M., Kush, A., Tan, C. and Chua, N. (1991) Characterization of cDNA and Genomic Clones Encoding 3-Hydroxy-3-Methylglutaryl-Coenzyme A Reductase from Hevea brasiliensis. Plant Molecular Biology, 16, 567-577.
[24] Chye, M., Tan, C. and Chua, N. (1992) Three Genes Enconde 3-Hydroxy-3-Methylglutaryl-Coenzyme A Reductase in Hevea brasiliensis: hmg1 and hmg3 Are Differentially Expressed. Plant Molecular Biology, 19, 473-484.
[25] van Deene, N., Bachmann, A., Schmidt, T., Schaller, H., Sand, J., Prufer, D. and Gronover, C. (2012) Molecular Cloning of Mevalonate Pathway Genes from Taraxacum brevicorniculatum and Functional Characterization of the Key Enzyme 3-Hydroxy-3-Methylglutaryl-Coenzyme A Reductase. Molecular Biology Reports, 39, 4337-4349.
[26] Holmberg, N., Harker, M., Wallace, A., Cayton, J., Gibbard, C. and Safford, R. (2003) Co-Expression of N-Terminal Truncated 3-Hydroxy-3-Methylglutaryl CoA Reductase and C24-Sterol Methyltransferase Type 1 in Transgenic Tobacco Enhances Carbon Flux Towards End-Product Sterols. The Plant Journal, 36, 12-20.
[27] Ro, D., Paradise, E., Ouellet, M., Fisher, K., Newman, K., Ndungu, J., Ho, K., Eachus, R., Ham, T., Kirby, J., Chang, M., Withers, S., Shiba, Y., Sarpong, R. and Keasling, J. (2006) Production of the Antimalarial Drug Precursor Artemisinic Acid in Engineered Yeast. Nature, 440, 940-943.
[28] Kim, Y., Lee, O., Oh, J., Jang, M. and Yang, D. (2014) Functional Analysis of 3-Hydroxy-3-Methylglutaryl Coenzyme A Reductase Encoding Genes in Triterpene Saponin-Producing Ginseng. Plant Physiology, 165, 373-387.
[29] Pfaffl, M.W. (2001) A New Mathematical Model for Relative Quantification in Real-Time RT-PCR. Nucleic Acids Research, 29, e45.

Copyright © 2022 by authors and Scientific Research Publishing Inc.

Creative Commons License

This work and the related PDF file are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.