Red dragon fruit or red pitaya (Hylocereus polyrhizus
) is the only edible fruit that contains betalains. The color of betalains ranges from red and violet to yellow in plants. Betalains may also serve as an important component of health-promoting and disease-preventing functional food. Currently, the biosynthetic and regulatory pathways for betalain production remain to be fully deciphered. In this study, isobaric tags for relative and absolute quantitation (iTRAQ)-based proteomic analyses were used to reveal the molecular mechanism of betalain biosynthesis in H. polyrhizus
fruits at white and red pulp stages, respectively. A total of 1946 proteins were identified as the differentially expressed between the two samples, and 936 of them were significantly highly expressed at the red pulp stage of H. polyrhizus
. RNA-seq and iTRAQ analyses showed that some transcripts and proteins were positively correlated; they belonged to “phenylpropanoid biosynthesis”, “tyrosine metabolism”, “flavonoid biosynthesis”, “ascorbate and aldarate metabolism”, “betalains biosynthesis” and “anthocyanin biosynthesis”. In betalains biosynthesis pathway, several proteins/enzymes such as polyphenol oxidase, CYP76AD3 and 4,5-dihydroxy-phenylalanine (DOPA) dioxygenase extradiol-like protein were identified. The present study provides a new insight into the molecular mechanism of the betalain biosynthesis at the posttranscriptional level.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited