The Plant cell

Antisense inhibition of the 2-oxoglutarate dehydrogenase complex in tomato demonstrates its importance for plant respiration and during leaf senescence and fruit maturation.

PMID 22751214


Transgenic tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) plants expressing a fragment of the gene encoding the E1 subunit of the 2-oxoglutarate dehydrogenase complex in the antisense orientation and exhibiting substantial reductions in the activity of this enzyme exhibit a considerably reduced rate of respiration. They were, however, characterized by largely unaltered photosynthetic rates and fruit yields but restricted leaf, stem, and root growth. These lines displayed markedly altered metabolic profiles, including changes in tricarboxylic acid cycle intermediates and in the majority of the amino acids but unaltered pyridine nucleotide content both in leaves and during the progression of fruit ripening. Moreover, they displayed a generally accelerated development exhibiting early flowering, accelerated fruit ripening, and a markedly earlier onset of leaf senescence. In addition, transcript and selective hormone profiling of gibberellins and abscisic acid revealed changes only in the former coupled to changes in transcripts encoding enzymes of gibberellin biosynthesis. The data obtained are discussed in the context of the importance of this enzyme in both photosynthetic and respiratory metabolism as well as in programs of plant development connected to carbon-nitrogen interactions.