New Advances in Molecular Biology of Horticultural Plants

A special issue of Horticulturae (ISSN 2311-7524). This special issue belongs to the section "Developmental Physiology, Biochemistry, and Molecular Biology".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 10 August 2024 | Viewed by 17115

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Faculty of Biology-Oriented Science and Technology, Kindai University, 930 Nishimitani, Kinokawa, Wakayama 649-6493, Japan
Interests: antimicrobial phytochemicals; insecticidal phytochemicals; metabolomics
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Guest Editor
1. School of Life and Molecular Sciences, Curtin University, Bentley, Australia
2. School of Pharmaceutical Science and Technology, Tianjin University, Tianjin, China
Interests: Orchidaceae; cadmium; pollinators; floral trait

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Molecular biology is the most important field in biology, revealing the molecular basis of biological processes in cells, and is essential for understanding the mechanisms of the execution and regulation of biological processes. The development of biology has depended on advances in molecular biology, including the development of experimental techniques dealing with DNAs, RNAs, and proteins, the invention of analysis instruments, and the development of software as well as databases. Molecular biology techniques have been applied to a wide range of living organisms, including animals and plants. However, knowledge regarding horticultural plants is relatively less available than that regarding model plants, such as Arabidopsis and Solanaceae. Comprehension via the molecular basis of mutualistic interactions between horticultural plants, pollinators, and/or microbial inhabitants deserves further research to better understand the key of plants’ success, essential for human welfare, health, and food supply.

Horticultural plants are a large plant family, including fruit trees, medicinal plants, flowering plants, ornamental plants, and the most threatened family of plants on the planet, Orchidaceae. Focus on these target plants also aids in preserving agrobiodiversity and crop wild relatives on the Earth. Due to their diversity, systematic and comprehensive information around these plants has not been summarized. Therefore, the accumulation of knowledge concerning the physiological and molecular biological data of various horticultural plants, in addition to their mutualistic interactions, is necessary to understand the cultivation, success, and availability of these plants. Research articles, reviews, short notes, and opinion articles focused on the application of molecular biology to various horticultural plants are welcome to our current Special Issue on “New Advances in Molecular Biology of Horticultural Plants”.

Dr. Tetsuya Matsukawa
Dr. Daniela Scaccabarozzi
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Horticulturae is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2200 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • horticultural plants
  • molecular biology
  • physiology
  • gene expression

Published Papers (8 papers)

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Research

Jump to: Review

21 pages, 3561 KiB  
Article
Molecular Cloning and Expression Analysis of Geranyllinalool Synthase Gene (SgGES) from Salvia guaranitica Plants
by Ahmed Ali Abdelhameed, Mohamed A. Eissa, Ragab I. El-kholy, Doaa Bahaa Eldin Darwish, Amany H. A. Abeed, Fathia A. Soudy, Amal Ahmed Alyamani, Hala M. Abdelmigid, Maissa M. Morsi, Jian Zhao, Mohammed Ali and Muhammad Zayed
Horticulturae 2024, 10(7), 668; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae10070668 - 24 Jun 2024
Viewed by 499
Abstract
Salvia guaranitica is considered one of the most significant medicinal and aromatic herbs in terms of nutritional and medical benefits due to its wealth of important active components. Among these compounds, terpenoids are the most prominent and abundant, particularly monoterpenes (C10), sesquiterpenes (C15), [...] Read more.
Salvia guaranitica is considered one of the most significant medicinal and aromatic herbs in terms of nutritional and medical benefits due to its wealth of important active components. Among these compounds, terpenoids are the most prominent and abundant, particularly monoterpenes (C10), sesquiterpenes (C15), and diterpenes (C20). They are biologically advantageous to plants and perform a multitude of functions. The current study aimed to clone the S. guaranitica gene that encodes for geranyllinalool synthases (SgGES, EC: 4.2.3.144), with consideration for these features. The open reading frame of the 867-amino-acid protein encoded by SgGES consists of 2.721 base pairs. In addition, the SgGES protein has five domains that belong to the terpene synthase family, which are related to the terpene and terpenoid synthase domains. We manipulated and overexpressed the SgGES gene in Nicotiana tabacum to explore its function. When compared to the GUS control, the transgenic N. tabacum plants displayed an increase in leaf production and diameter when compared with the wild-type plants. Finally, analysis of transgenic plants using gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC-MS) showed that SgGES is responsible for producing various terpene species, especially diterpenes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Advances in Molecular Biology of Horticultural Plants)
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13 pages, 6115 KiB  
Article
Novel R2R3-MYB Transcription Factor LhMYB1 Promotes Anthocyanin Accumulation in Lilium concolor var. pulchellum
by Shengnan Tian, Muhammad Moaaz Ali, Mingli Ke, Yuxian Lu, Yiping Zheng, Xuanmei Cai, Shaozhong Fang, Jian Wu, Zhimin Lin and Faxing Chen
Horticulturae 2024, 10(5), 509; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae10050509 - 15 May 2024
Viewed by 648
Abstract
Lilium concolor var. pulchellum has a brilliant flower colour, high germination rate, and resistance to cold, drought, and salinity and is an excellent source of lily germplasm. Anthocyanins are important flavonoids commonly found in plants and can make the flowers and fruits of [...] Read more.
Lilium concolor var. pulchellum has a brilliant flower colour, high germination rate, and resistance to cold, drought, and salinity and is an excellent source of lily germplasm. Anthocyanins are important flavonoids commonly found in plants and can make the flowers and fruits of plants more colourful. We first found that 0.2 mg/L 1-naphthaleneacetic acid (NAA) specifically induced the accumulation of anthocyanins, which were mainly cyanidins, in callus tissue culture of Lilium. Transcriptomic results indicated that anthocyanin accumulation was mainly involved in the flavonoid pathway, and an LhMYB1 transcription factor encoding 267 amino acids positively associated with anthocyanin accumulation was cloned from the MYB family. Subcellular localisation in tobacco showed that the gene was located in the nucleus of epidermal cells. Virus-induced gene silencing showed that silencing of the LhMYB1 gene on lily petals resulted in a purple to white colour change and a decrease in anthocyanin deposition, mainly in the upper and lower epidermis of the petals. Therefore, the results of this study will provide some ideas for the molecular breeding of lily flower colour. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Advances in Molecular Biology of Horticultural Plants)
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13 pages, 6030 KiB  
Article
BcBZR1 Regulates Leaf Inclination Angle in Non-Heading Chinese Cabbage (Brassica campestris ssp. chinensis Makino)
by Wenyuan Lin, Yiran Li, Ying He, Ying Wu and Xilin Hou
Horticulturae 2024, 10(4), 324; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae10040324 - 27 Mar 2024
Viewed by 826
Abstract
Brassinosteroids (BRs) play critical roles in plant growth by promoting cell elongation and division, leading to increased leaf inclination angles. BRASSINAZOLE RESISTANT 1 (BZR1) and BRI1-EMS-SUPPRESSOR 1 (BES1) act as transcription factors in the brassinosteroid signaling pathway and are involved in several physiological [...] Read more.
Brassinosteroids (BRs) play critical roles in plant growth by promoting cell elongation and division, leading to increased leaf inclination angles. BRASSINAZOLE RESISTANT 1 (BZR1) and BRI1-EMS-SUPPRESSOR 1 (BES1) act as transcription factors in the brassinosteroid signaling pathway and are involved in several physiological activities regulated by BRs. In this study, we identified and cloned BcBZR1 from the heitacai non-heading Chinese cabbage (NHCC) cultivar. The sequence analysis showed that the coding sequence length of BcBZR1 is 996 bp, encoding 331 amino acid residues. Subcellular localization assays showed that BcBZR1 is localized in the nucleus and cytoplasm and that BcBZR1 protein is transported to the nucleus after receiving BR signals. Compared with Col-0, the leaf inclination angle was smaller in BcBZR1-OX. The EBR treatment experiment indicated that BRs regulate the differential expression of paclobutrazol resistance1 (PRE1) and ILI1 binding bHLH1 (IBH1) in the adaxial and abaxial cells of the petiole through BZR1, thus regulating the leaf inclination angle. The bimolecular fluorescence complementation (BiFC) assay indicated that BcBZR1 interacts with C-repeat Binding Factor2 (BcCBF2) and CBF3. Taken together, our findings not only validate the function of BcBZR1 in leaf inclination angle distribution in non-heading Chinese cabbage, but also contribute to the mechanism of leaf inclination angle regulation in this species under cold stress. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Advances in Molecular Biology of Horticultural Plants)
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11 pages, 3540 KiB  
Article
Rapid Construction and Application of a Vector for Tobacco Ringspot Virus-Induced McPDS Silencing in Bitter Gourd
by Lingen Zeng, Hui Zhang, Jinju Guo, Zhijun Deng, Hongbiao Liu, Hu Du, Yujuan Zhong, Changyuan Zhang and Chunpeng Yao
Horticulturae 2024, 10(2), 110; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae10020110 - 23 Jan 2024
Viewed by 1086
Abstract
The aim of this study is to facilitate the construction of virus-induced gene silencing vectors and to provide a reference or positive control for gene silencing in bitter gourd. A recombinant TRSV (tobacco ringspot virus) containing two components, pTRSV1 and pTRSV2, was used [...] Read more.
The aim of this study is to facilitate the construction of virus-induced gene silencing vectors and to provide a reference or positive control for gene silencing in bitter gourd. A recombinant TRSV (tobacco ringspot virus) containing two components, pTRSV1 and pTRSV2, was used in this study. The fragment of the McPDS target was cloned into pTRSV2 via combined enzymic ligation during digestion. The TRSV components were agro-infiltrated into tobacco leaves to grow virus particles, which were then extracted and mechanically inoculated into the bitter gourd plants. The effect of TRSV-McPDS-mediated McPDS gene silencing was evaluated by observing the photo-bleaching phenotype, detecting the TRSV virus, and quantifying the downregulation of MCPDS gene expression and chlorophyll contents. The results showed that all bitter gourd plants infected with the empty TRSV or TRSV-McPDS virus grew and developed normally, with no visible signs of viral disease. However, after seven days of inoculation, only the bitter gourd plants that were inoculated with TRSV-McPDS showed obvious photobleaching in the leaves, stems, and buds. The TRSV-specific fragments were tested out in the systemically infected leaves of bitter gourd. The transcription level of the McPDS gene in the leaves dropped by 84.7%. The chlorophyll content also dropped significantly. These data suggest that the rapidly constructed VIGS vector TRSV-McPDS successfully induced McPDS silencing in bitter gourd. Taken together, the results of this study provide a practical method for vector construction in various VIGS applications, as well as a reference and a positive control for TRSV-induced gene silencing in bitter gourd. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Advances in Molecular Biology of Horticultural Plants)
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16 pages, 4168 KiB  
Article
Transcriptomic Analysis Revealed the Discrepancy between Early-Ripening ‘Geneva Early’ and Late-Ripening ‘Hanfu’ Apple Cultivars during Fruit Development and Ripening
by Qianyu Yue, Jieqiang He, Xinyue Yang, Pengda Cheng, Abid Khan, Wenyun Shen, Yi Song, Shicong Wang, Fengwang Ma and Qingmei Guan
Horticulturae 2023, 9(5), 570; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae9050570 - 11 May 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1895
Abstract
Apples (Malus × domestica Borkh.) can be categorized into early-, medium-, and late-ripening cultivars based on the length of the fruit developmental phases. The lengthening of the apple ripening period has a direct impact on its economic worth and market competitiveness, although [...] Read more.
Apples (Malus × domestica Borkh.) can be categorized into early-, medium-, and late-ripening cultivars based on the length of the fruit developmental phases. The lengthening of the apple ripening period has a direct impact on its economic worth and market competitiveness, although the underlying mechanism is mostly unclear. In the current study, the development and maturation of the early-ripening ‘Geneva Early’ (GE) and late-ripening ‘Hanfu’ (HF) cultivars of apple fruit were studied using transcriptomics to detect and identify the changes of differential genes. Results showed that the two varieties had different ripening periods, but in both, the development process of fruit ripening required cell division, cell expansion, starch accumulation, and secondary metabolite accumulation. In the early stages of fruit development (G1 to G2), the GE’s fruit size was larger than HF’s, and the GO analysis revealed an enrichment in genes involved in the metabolism of fatty acids and carbon molecules. In G2 phase, the GE involved numerous regulatory factors of hormonal pathways, while in HF this phase was mainly enriched in the metabolism of sugars and carbohydrates. The results indicated that during GE development, the relevant genes regulating fruit development were expressed earlier than HF, which made fruit development enter the next development phase earlier, thereby shortening the fruit development phase. These findings contributed to an improved understanding of the molecular basis of apple ripening and provide a reliable reference for apple breeding using genomics. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Advances in Molecular Biology of Horticultural Plants)
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20 pages, 2161 KiB  
Article
Callus Induction and Plant Regeneration from Carum copticum and Assessment of Antioxidant Responses and Phytochemical Profiling by In Vitro Salinity Stress
by Roya Razavizadeh, Fatemeh Adabavazeh, Marzieh Rezaee Chermahini and Setsuko Komatsu
Horticulturae 2023, 9(1), 22; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae9010022 - 23 Dec 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2271
Abstract
Higher production of secondary metabolites is one of the adaptive responses to alleviate the impact of environmental injuries. In the present investigation, the production of these metabolites with medicinal importance induced by salinity in Carum copticum was investigated. To develop a better way [...] Read more.
Higher production of secondary metabolites is one of the adaptive responses to alleviate the impact of environmental injuries. In the present investigation, the production of these metabolites with medicinal importance induced by salinity in Carum copticum was investigated. To develop a better way for the production of medicinal substances, callogenesis and plant regeneration were analyzed, and seeds, calli, and/or regenerated seedlings were exposed to different concentrations of NaCl under in vitro culture conditions. The maximum frequency of callus induction was obtained on a medium supplemented with 0.25 mg L−1 2, 4-dichlorophenoxyacetic (2,4-D) and 1 mg L−1 benzyl amino purine (BAP) from stem explants. Plant regeneration with multiple shoots was obtained from pieces of callus transferred to MS medium fortified with 0.25 mg L−1 2,4-D and 1.5 mg L−1 BAP. Four weeks after treatment, salinity induced a substantial increase in the accumulation of reducing sugars and proline as compatible osmolytes and the activity of antioxidant enzymes. Total phenolics and anthocyanin significantly increased in all samples with increasing NaCl concentrations; however, the regenerated seedlings showed a reduction in these compounds at severe NaCl concentration compared to the control. Moreover, NaCl enhanced thymol, γ-terpinene, sabinene, and myrcene in the seedlings and calli, as well as carvacrol, limonene, and α-terpinene in the regenerated seedlings. These results suggest that salinity has a marked impact on improving the content of antioxidant metabolites and essential oils in C. copticum, whose callus might be the most salt tolerant in all tested samples. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Advances in Molecular Biology of Horticultural Plants)
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Review

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15 pages, 6123 KiB  
Review
Evolution of Seed Dispersal Modes in the Orchidaceae: Has the Vanilla Mystery Been Solved?
by Adam P. Karremans, Charlotte Watteyn, Daniela Scaccabarozzi, Oscar A. Pérez-Escobar and Diego Bogarín
Horticulturae 2023, 9(12), 1270; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae9121270 - 27 Nov 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 4761
Abstract
Orchid seeds are predominantly wind-dispersed, often developed within dry, dehiscent fruits that typically release millions of dust-like seeds into the air. Animal-mediated seed dispersal is a lesser-known phenomenon in the family and predominantly occurs in groups belonging to early-diverging lineages bearing indehiscent, fleshy [...] Read more.
Orchid seeds are predominantly wind-dispersed, often developed within dry, dehiscent fruits that typically release millions of dust-like seeds into the air. Animal-mediated seed dispersal is a lesser-known phenomenon in the family and predominantly occurs in groups belonging to early-diverging lineages bearing indehiscent, fleshy fruits with hard, rounded, dark seeds. In this review, we explore the evolutionary trends of seed dispersal mechanisms in Orchidaceae, focusing on the pantropical genus Vanilla. Notably, certain Neotropical species of Vanilla produce vanillin-aromatic compounds synthesized naturally in their fruits, which plays a pivotal role in seed dispersal. Ectozoochory occurs in dry, dehiscent fruits, whose seeds are dispersed by (i) male euglossine bees collecting the fruit’s vanillin aromatic compounds and (ii) female stingless bees collecting the fruit’s mesocarp. Endozoochory occurs in (iii) highly nutritious, indehiscent fruits consumed by terrestrial mammals or (iv) fleshy, dehiscent fruits whose mesocarp is consumed by arboreal mammals. Wind dispersal appears to be a derived state in Orchidaceae and, given its predominance, a trait likely associated with enhanced speciation rates. Zoochory primarily occurs in groups derived from early-diverging lineages; occasional reversions suggest a link between dispersal mode and fruit and seed traits. Interestingly, fruit dehiscence and fleshiness in Vanilla lack phylogenetic signal despite their role in determining dispersal modes, suggesting potential environmental adaptability. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Advances in Molecular Biology of Horticultural Plants)
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17 pages, 3358 KiB  
Review
The Role of the γ-Aminobutyric Acid (GABA) in Plant Salt Stress Tolerance
by Siarhei A. Dabravolski and Stanislav V. Isayenkov
Horticulturae 2023, 9(2), 230; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae9020230 - 8 Feb 2023
Cited by 15 | Viewed by 3936
Abstract
γ-Aminobutyric acid (GABA) is a non-protein amino acid that accumulates in many plant species in response to environmental stress. A number of reverse-genetic experiments and omics analyses have revealed positive relationships between GABA levels and tolerance to stresses. Furthermore, the application of exogenous [...] Read more.
γ-Aminobutyric acid (GABA) is a non-protein amino acid that accumulates in many plant species in response to environmental stress. A number of reverse-genetic experiments and omics analyses have revealed positive relationships between GABA levels and tolerance to stresses. Furthermore, the application of exogenous GABA has been demonstrated to effectively reduce ROS levels, enhance membrane stability and modulate phytohormones cross-talk, thus improving tolerance against multiple stresses. However, molecular mechanisms regulating GABA homeostasis and physiological functions in plants remain largely unclear. In this review, we focus on the recent achievements in deciphering the role of genetic manipulations to modulate endogenous GABA levels and the exogenous application of GABA and associated metabolites to improve tolerance to salt stress. Finally, we discuss the role of GABA in the regulation of ion homeostasis in high-salinity conditions. These findings have laid the groundwork for future studies to explore the genetic, physiological, and molecular mechanisms of GABA-mediated improvements in plant productivity under high-salt environmental conditions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Advances in Molecular Biology of Horticultural Plants)
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