Submitted to: Plant Molecular Biology
Publication Type: Peer reviewed journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 11/7/2007
Publication Date: 11/30/2007
Citation: Bhave, M., Morris, C.F. 2008. Molecular genetics of puroindolines and related genes: regulation of expression, membrane binding properties and applications.. Plant Molecular Biology 66:221-231. Interpretive Summary: Kernel hardness (texture) is an important end-use quality trait in wheat. Variation in hardness is associated with variation in puroindoline genes. In this report, all of the information now available on Puroindoline genes in wheat is reviewed. These genes are important because they determine the kernel texture class of wheat (soft, hard or durum), which has significant effects on the processing and uses of wheat varieties. In addition, puroindolines are also now being investigated for their antimicrobial activities, which may have significant effects on future uses of and research on wheat.
Technical Abstract: Kernel texture of wheat is a primary determinant of its technological properties. Soft kernel texture phenotype results when the Puroindoline a and Puroindoline b genes are present and encode the wild-type puroindolines PINA and PINB, respectively, and various mutant alleles in either or both gene(s) result in hard phenotypes. A wealth of information is now available that furthers our understanding regarding the spatial and temporal regulation of expression of Puroindoline genes and their promoter elements. Through the use of model membranes and synthetic peptides we also have a clearer understanding of the significance of the cysteine backbone and tryptophan-rich domain in the PIN proteins and their helicoid tertiary structures in relation to their membrane-active properties. Many studies suggest individual yet co-operative modes of action of the two PIN proteins in determining kernel texture, and significant evidence is accumulating that the proteins have in vivo and in vitro antimicrobial activities, shedding light on the biological roles of this unique ensemble of proteins. The puroindolines are now being explored for applications in grain kernel texture modifications as well as antimicrobial activities.