Journal of Plant Biochemistry and Biotechnology

, Volume 28, Issue 4, pp 424–436 | Cite as

Promoter and methylation status analysis revealed the importance of PkGES gene in picroside biosynthesis in Picrorhiza kurrooa

  • Bharati Lalhal Barsain
  • Sudesh Kumar YadavEmail author
  • Vipin HallanEmail author
Original Article


Picrorhiza kurrooa Royle ex Benth., an important high altitude plant produces picrosides, the monoterpenoids of high therapeutic value. Production of geraniol in the iridoid branch of the picroside biosynthetic pathway is a key step in the biosynthesis of picrosides. Geraniol synthase, catalyzes the conversion of geranyl pyrophosphate into geraniol. In view of this, here we report the identification and sequence analysis of PkGES promoter. The PkGES promoter sequence was isolated following a directional genome walking approach. Presence of similar cis elements such as GT1 consensus elements, LTREs, DREs, WRKY binding elements, PREATPRODH motif, BIHD1OS motif, SEBFCONSSTPR10A motif and MeJA responsive elements in the promoter sequence of PkGES documented its multiple stress responsive characteristic signifying its role in adaptation. Further, PkGES showed differential expression pattern in leaves, rhizome and roots. To elucidate whether the differential expression pattern of PkGES correlates with its epigenetic regulation, DNA methylation analysis of promoter as well as coding region of PkGES was conducted. The DNA methylation levels in the promoter sequence of PkGES gene were found to be dominated at CG followed by CHH and CHG sequence contexts. Epigenetic regulation (DNA methylation) of promoter as well as coding region of PkGES suggested its role in the regulation of PkGES transcripts in diverse tissues. The present study has revealed the presence of several stress inducible cis elements in PkGES promoter sequence and its tissue specific epigenetic regulation in P. kurrooa.


Cis elements DNA methylation Geraniol Geraniol synthase Picrosides Promoter 



Geraniol synthase


Geranyl pyrophosphate


Low temperature responsive elements


Dehydration responsive elements



Authors are thankful to Director, CSIR-IHBT for his valuable suggestions and support. BLB would like to acknowledge Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) for fellowship in the form of SRF and AcSIR for PhD registration. Department of Biotechnology, Govt. of India (GAP-159) is duly acknowledged for financial support for this work.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

13562_2019_498_MOESM1_ESM.docx (198 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 197 kb)


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Copyright information

© Society for Plant Biochemistry and Biotechnology 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Biotechnology DivisionCSIR-Institute of Himalayan Bioresource TechnologyPalampurIndia
  2. 2.Academy of Scientific and Innovative ResearchNew DelhiIndia
  3. 3.Center of Innovative and Applied Bioprocessing (CIAB)MohaliIndia

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