Tropical Plant Biology

, Volume 12, Issue 2, pp 67–77 | Cite as

Differential Expression Analysis of Reference Genes in Pineapple (Ananas comosus L.) during Reproductive Development and Response to Abiotic Stress, Hormonal Stimuli

  • Huihuang Chen
  • Bingyan Hu
  • Lihua Zhao
  • Duoduo Shi
  • Zeyuan She
  • Xiaoyi Huang
  • S.V.G.N. Priyadarshani
  • Xiaoping NiuEmail author
  • Yuan QinEmail author


Pineapple (Ananas comosus L.), a popular tropical fruit, is a good model for evolutionary analysis and genetic research on adaptation to drought habitats, multiple fruits, and crassulacean acid metabolism (CAM) photosynthesis. Reliable reference genes for the normalization of the levels of development-related and/or stress-responsive genes is important for elucidating the mechanisms of plant development as well as their adaptation to various environments. In this study, ten candidate reference genes were selected, and the expression stability of each gene was assessed across 105 pineapple samples, consisting of different reproductive organs (stigma, petal, sepal, ovule, anther, flower, and fruitlet), abiotic stress (salinity, drought, and cold), and hormones (abscisic acid, ethylene, jasmonic acid, and salicylic acid). Our results revealed that PP2A and UBQ were stably expressed during pineapple reproductive development. PP2A and CYC were the stable reference genes across abiotic stress, whereas RAN and EF1α/PP2A was the best candidates for various hormones. To validate the feasibility of using these stably expressed genes for further experiments, we evaluated the expression profile of AcMYB30 across different samples. Our results provide important insights on the growth and development of the pineapple plant as well as information on stress-tolerance genes and stress-signaling pathways in this important fruit.


Pineapple (Ananas comosus L.) Reference gene Reproductive development Abiotic stress Hormonal stimulus Gene expression 



Crassulacean acid metabolism


Quantitative real-time PCR


Amplification efficiency


Correlation coefficient


Coefficient variance


Standard deviation


Abscisic acid




Jasmonic acid


Salicylic acid



This project was funded by the China Postdoctoral Science Foundation (2018 M632564), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (31800262), the Special Fund for Science and Technology Innovation in FAFU (KFA17439A), the Weng Hongwu Academic Innovation Research Fund of Peking University, the Natural Science Foundation of Fujian Province (2017 J01601), and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (U1605212).

Author Contributions

X.N. and Y.Q. initiated and designed the research. X.N., B.H., H.C., X.H., and Z.S. performed the experiments. X.N., H.C., L.Z., and D.S. analyzed the data. X.N., H.C., and S.V.G.N. Priyadarshani contributed reagents/materials/analytic tools. X.N. wrote the paper. X.N. and Y.Q. revised the paper.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interests

The authors declare that the research was conducted in the absence of any commercial or financial relationships that could be construed as a potential conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

12042_2019_9218_MOESM1_ESM.docx (3.9 mb)
ESM 1 (DOCX 3969 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Huihuang Chen
    • 1
  • Bingyan Hu
    • 1
  • Lihua Zhao
    • 1
  • Duoduo Shi
    • 1
  • Zeyuan She
    • 1
  • Xiaoyi Huang
    • 1
  • S.V.G.N. Priyadarshani
    • 1
    • 2
  • Xiaoping Niu
    • 1
    Email author
  • Yuan Qin
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.State Key Laboratory of Ecological Pest Control for Fujian and Taiwan Crops, College of Plant Protection, Fujian Provincial Key Laboratory of Haixia Applied Plant Systems Biology, Center for Genomics and BiotechnologyFujian Agriculture and Forestry UniversityFuzhouChina
  2. 2.College of Crop ScienceFujian Agriculture and Forestry UniversityFuzhouChina

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