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Glutelin subtype-dependent protein localization in rice grain evidenced by immunodetection analyses

Takahashi, Kei, Kohno, Hiromi, Kanabayashi, Tomomichi, Okuda, Masaki
Plant molecular biology 2019 v.100 no.3 pp. 231-246
Oryza sativa, antibodies, endosperm, fluorescent antibody technique, genes, glutelins, microscopy, protein bodies, rice, rice flour, seed storage, seeds
KEY MESSAGE: GluA and GluB-4/5 glutelin subfamilies are mainly localized to outer region of the endosperm, particularly in its ventral side, in rice grain, but GluC is localized to throughout the endosperm. The major seed storage protein in rice (Oryza sativa) is glutelin, which forms a vacuole-derived protein body type-II. Glutelins are encoded by multiple genes, and generally comprise four protein subfamilies, namely, GluA, GluB, GluC, and GluD: however, the localization pattern of glutelin in rice grains remains obscure. In this study, we investigated the localization pattern of five subtypes of the glutelin protein in rice grains using glutelin-subtype specific antibodies. Immunoblot analysis against sequentially polished rice flour fractions from three crop years and seven japonica rice varieties revealed that GluA was strongly localized in the outer region of the endosperm, including the subaleurone layer, whereas GluC was distributed throughout the endosperm. Among the glutelin subtypes, GluA was mostly found in the outer region of the rice grain, followed by GluB-4/5, GluB-1, GluD, and GluC. Immunofluorescence labeling microscopy analysis using immature rice seeds clearly revealed that the localization pattern of GluC and GluD was completely different from that of GluA and GluB. Expression levels of all glutelins, particularly GluA, GluB-1, and GluB-4/5, were stronger on the ventral than dorsal side in rice grains. These results provide strong and consistent evidence that glutelins localize to the rice grain in a subfamily-dependent manner.