The apocarotenoid metabolite zaxinone regulates growth and strigolactone biosynthesis in rice

Jian You Wang, Imran Haider, Muhammad Jamil, Valentina Fiorilli, Yoshimoto Saito, Jianing Mi, Lina Baz, Boubacar Amadou Kountche, Kunpeng Jia, Xiujie Guo, Aparna Balakrishna, Valentine Otang Ntui, Beate Reinke, Veronica Volpe, Takashi Gojobori, Ikram Blilou, Luisa Lanfranco, Paola Bonfante, Salim Al-Babili

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations

Abstract

Carotenoid cleavage dioxygenases (CCDs) form hormones and signaling molecules. Here we show that a member of an overlooked plant CCD subfamily from rice, that we name Zaxinone Synthase (ZAS), can produce zaxinone, a novel apocarotenoid metabolite in vitro. Loss-of-function mutants (zas) contain less zaxinone, exhibit retarded growth and showed elevated levels of strigolactones (SLs), a hormone that determines plant architecture, mediates mycorrhization and facilitates infestation by root parasitic weeds, such as Striga spp. Application of zaxinone can rescue zas phenotypes, decrease SL content and release and promote root growth in wild-type seedlings. In conclusion, we show that zaxinone is a key regulator of rice development and biotic interactions and has potential for increasing crop growth and combating Striga, a severe threat to global food security.
Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalNature Communications
Volume10
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 18 2019

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