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Differential regulation of waxy gene expression in rice endosperm

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In order to examine the effects of different alleles on the gene expression at the waxy locus, the Wx gene product which controls the synthesis of amylose was isolated from endosperm starch of rice plants and analysed by electrophoretic techniques. The major protein bound to starch granules was absent in most of waxy strains and increased with the number of Wx alleles in triploid endosperms, suggesting that the major protein is the Wx gene product. In addition to wx alleles which result in the absence or drastic reduction of the Wx gene product and amylose, differentiation of Wx alleles seemed to have occurred among nonwaxy rice strains. At least two Wx alleles with different efficiencies in the production of the major protein as well as amylose were detected. These alleles are discussed in relation to regulation of the gene expression.

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Communicated by G. S. Khush

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Sano, Y. Differential regulation of waxy gene expression in rice endosperm. Theoret. Appl. Genetics 68, 467–473 (1984).

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Key words

  • Oryza sativa
  • O. glaberrima
  • Wx gene expression
  • Amylose content
  • Electrophoresis