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Journal of experimental botany

Alkaloids in plants and root cultures of Atropa belladonna overexpressing putrescine N-methyltransferase.


PMID 12885861

Abstract

Putrescine N-methyltransferase (PMT) is the first alkaloid-specific enzyme for nicotine and tropane alkaloid formation. The pmt gene from Nicotiana tabacum was fused to the CaMV 35S promoter and integrated into the Atropa belladonna genome. Transgenic plants and derived root cultures were analysed for gene expression and for levels of alkaloids and their precursors. Scopolamine, hyoscyamine, tropine, pseudotropine, tropinone, and calystegines were found unaltered or somewhat decreased in pmt-overexpressing lines compared to controls. When root cultures were treated with 5% sucrose, calystegine levels were elevated in control roots, but were not affected in pmt-overexpressing roots. 1 microM auxin reduced calystegine levels in control roots, while in pmt-overexpressing roots all alkaloids remained unaltered. Expression level of pmt alone is apparently not limiting for tropane alkaloid formation in A. belladonna.

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93550
Tropine, ≥97.0% (NT)
C8H15NO