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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Riverside, California » National Clonal Germplasm Repository for Citrus » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #335674

Research Project: Management and Characterization of Citrus and Date Genetic Resources and Associated Information

Location: National Clonal Germplasm Repository for Citrus

Title: Changes in anthocyanin production during domestication of Citrus

Author
item BUTELLI, EUGENIO - John Innes Center
item GARCIA-LOR, ANDRÉS - Valencian Institute For Agricultural Research
item LICCIARDELLO, CONCETTA - University Of Rome Sapienza
item LAS CASAS, GIUSEPPINA - University Of Catania
item HILL, LIONEL - John Innes Center
item RECUPERO, GIUSEPPE - Universita Di Catania
item Keremane, Manjunath
item RAMADUGU, CHANDRIKA - University Of California Agriculture And Natural Resources (UCANR)
item Krueger, Robert
item XU, QIANG - Huazhong Agricultural University
item DENG, XIUXIN - Huazhong Agricultural University
item FANCIULLINO, ANNE-LAURE - Inland Northwest Research Alliance, Inra
item FROCELICHER, YANN - Inland Northwest Research Alliance, Inra
item NAVARRO, LUIS - Valencian Institute For Agricultural Research
item MARTIN, CATHIE - John Innes Center

Submitted to: Plant Physiology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/4/2017
Publication Date: 2/14/2017
Citation: Butelli, E., Garcia-Lor, A., Licciardello, C., Las Casas, G., Hill, L., Recupero, G.R., Keremane, M.L., Ramadugu, C., Krueger, R., Xu, Q., Deng, X., Fanciullino, A., Frocelicher, Y., Navarro, L., Martin, C. 2017. Changes in anthocyanin production during domestication of Citrus. Plant Physiology. 173:2225-2242. https://doi.org/10.1104/pp.16.01701.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1104/pp.16.01701

Interpretive Summary: Anthocyanins are water-soluble phenolic compounds responsible for the red, blue and purple colour of most angiosperm plants. Anthocyanins are produces by some but not all Citrus species. The pathway of anthocyanin biosynthesis is well characterized and all the structural genes that encode the core biosynthetic enzymes have been identified from many species. The Ruby gene, which encodes a MYB transcription factor controlling anthocyanin biosynthesis. Almost all the natural variation in pigmentation by anthocyanins in Citrus species can be explained by differences in activity of the Ruby gene, caused by point mutations, deletions and insertions of transposable elements. Comparison of the allelic constitution of Ruby in different species and cultivars also helps to clarify many of the taxonomic relationships in different species of Citrus.

Technical Abstract: Mandarin (C. reticulta), citron (C. medica) and pummelo (C. maxima) are important fruit species of the genus Citrus and parents of the interspecific hybirds that constitute the most familar commercial varities of citurs: sweet orange, clementine, lemon, lime and grapefruit. Citron and its hybrids produce anthocyanins in young leaves and flowers, as do species genera closely related to Citrus, but mandarin and pummelo varieties do not. We investigated the activity of the Ruby gene, which encodes a MYB transcription factor controlling anthocyanin biosynthesis, in different accessions of a range of Citrus species and in domesticated cultivars. Almost all the natural variation in pigmentation by anthocyanins in Citrus species can be explained by differences in activity of the Ruby gene, caused by point mutations, deletions and insertions of transposable elements. A white mutant of lemon lacks functional alleles of Ruby, demonstrating that Ruby plays an essential role in anthocyanin production in citrus. Comparison of the allelic constitution of Ruby in different species and cultivars confirms the hybrid origin of commercial varieties during domestication, elucidates the relationships within the subgenus Papeda and allows a new genetic classification of mandarins.