Development of a virus-induced gene silencing (VIGS) system for Spinacia oleracea L

Jungmin Lee, Dang Viet Cao, Jiwon Kim, Reniel S. Pamplona, Jongcheol Ahn, Seok Keun Cho, Seong Wook Yang, Key Zung Riu, Kyung Hwan Boo

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13 Citations (Scopus)


Virus-induced gene silencing (VIGS) is known as a rapid and efficient system for studying functions of interesting genes in plants. Tobacco rattle virus (TRV) is widely applied for the gene silencing of many plants. Although spinach is a TRV-susceptible plant, a TRV-based VIGS system has not yet been developed for spinach. In this study, we established a TRV-based VIGS system for spinach. To evaluate the functionality of the TRV-based VIGS system, the phytoene desaturase gene (SoPDS) was first isolated from spinach as a marker gene. Then, the VIGS vector pTRV2 was combined with the partial fragment of SoPDS gene in sense or antisense orientation. Using the Agrobacterium infiltration method, we introduced the pTRV2-SoPDS clone to silence the SoPDS gene in spinach. SoPDS was efficiently silenced, and consequently, greater than 90% of newly emerging leaves exhibited severe chlorosis symptoms in the treated plants. Levels of chlorosis symptoms were similar in both plants infected with pTRV2 vectors harboring sense (SoPDS_S) or antisense (SoPDS_A) gene fragments. Quantitative analysis of SoPDS gene expression by qRT-PCR revealed that gene expression was reduced by greater than 90% in both SoPDS_S and SoPDS_A VIGS plants. Chlorosis on leaves was prolonged up to 4~5 wk after Agrobacterium infiltration. The TRV-based VIGS system was effective in silencing the SoPDS gene in spinach, suggesting that it can be a useful reverse genetics tool for the functional study of spinach genes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)97-103
Number of pages7
JournalIn Vitro Cellular and Developmental Biology - Plant
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Apr 1

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was performed with the support of the “Cooperative Research Program for Agriculture Science & Technology Development (Project No. PJ011289032016),” the Rural Development Administration, Republic of Korea, and the Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) funded by the Ministry of Education (2009-0094059, 2016R1A6A1A03012862, and 2016R1D1A1B02012307).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017, The Society for In Vitro Biology.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biotechnology
  • Plant Science


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