Molecular biology reports

Molecular cloning and expression of gene encoding aromatic amino acid decarboxylase in 'Vidal blanc' grape berries.

PMID 21789483


The pleasantly fruity and floral 2-phenylethanol are a dominant aroma compound in post-ripening 'Vidal blanc' grapes. However, to date little has been reported about its synthetic pathway in grapevine. In the present study, a full-length cDNA of VvAADC (encoding aromatic amino acid decarboxylase) was firstly cloned from the berries of 'Vidal blanc', an interspecific hybrid variety of Vitis vinifera × Vitis riparia. This sequence encodes a complete open reading frame of 482 amino acids with a calculated molecular mass of 54 kDa and isoelectric point value (pI) of 5.73. The amino acid sequence deduced shared about 79% identity with that of aromatic L: -amino acid decarboxylases (AADCs) from tomato. Real-time PCR analysis indicated that VvAADC transcript abundance presented a small peak at 110 days after full bloom and then a continuous increase at the berry post-ripening stage, which was consistent with the accumulation of 2-phenylethanol, but did not correspond to the trends of two potential intermediates, phenethylamine and 2-phenylacetaldehyde. Furthermore, phenylalanine still exhibited a continuous increase even in post-ripening period. It is thus suggested that 2-phenylethanol biosynthetic pathway mediated by AADC exists in grape berries, but it has possibly little contribution to a considerable accumulation of 2-phenylethanol in post-ripening 'Vidal blanc' grapes.