Development of a Gateway-compatible two-component expression vector system for plants
Genetic transformation of plants offers the possibility of functional characterization of individual genes and the improvement of plant traits. Development of novel transformation vectors is essential to improve plant genetic transformation technologies for various applications. Here, we present the development of a Gateway-compatible two-component expression vector system for Agrobacterium-mediated plant transformation. The expression system contains two independent plasmid vector sets, the activator vector and the reporter vector, based on the concept of the GAL4/UAS trans-activation system. The activator vector expresses a modified GAL4 protein (GAL4-VP16) under the control of specific promoter. The GAL4-VP16 protein targets the UAS in the reporter vector and subsequently activates reporter gene expression. Both the activator and reporter vectors contain the Gateway recombination cassette, which can be rapidly and efficiently replaced by any specific promoter and reporter gene of interest, to facilitate gene cloning procedures. The efficiency of the activator–reporter expression system has been assessed using agroinfiltration mediated transient expression assay in Nicotiana benthamiana and stable transgenic expression in Arabidopsis thaliana. The reporter genes were highly expressed with precise tissue-specific and subcellular localization. This Gateway-compatible two-component expression vector system will be a useful tool for advancing plant gene engineering.
KeywordsGAL4-VP16/UAS Tissue-specific expression Binary vector Agro-infiltration Transgenic plant
We appreciated Prof. Dr. Jae-Yean Kim for generous support. This work was supported by the Special Fund for Forestry Scientific Research in the Public Interest (201504705) and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (31901345).
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