Plant Growth Regulation

, Volume 85, Issue 1, pp 57–72 | Cite as

Characterization of a sterile dwarf mutant and the cloning of zeaxanthin epoxidase in Asian cotton (Gossypium arboreum L.)

  • Chuntai Wu
  • Baoliang Zhou
Original paper


To document radiation damage incurred by nuclear DNA and understand the molecular mechanisms that control plant height, a sterile dwarf mutant (sd a ) derived from the Gossypium arboreum treated with 60Co γ-rays was characterized. A sequence analysis revealed that sd a included a partial deletion and a point mutation. The physiological changes and responses of the sd a mutant to exogenous hormones showed that the mutant’s chlorophyll contents, net photosynthetic rate, and abscisic acid levels were significantly reduced compared to those of wild-type. Using the sequence of a differentially expressed sequence tag encoding a zeaxanthin epoxidase (ZEP), a novel etiolation-associated gene, full-length cDNA was rapidly cloned using rapid amplification of cDNA ends. The full-length cDNA of this gene is 2414 bp, with a 2004-bp open reading frame encoding a putative ZEP of 667 amino acid residues that has a 73.421-kDa theoretical molecular mass and a 6.67 isoelectric point. The genomic sequence of GaZEP is 5233 bp, comprising 15 exons and 14 introns. The GaZEP promoter contains numerous cis-regulatory elements that are responsive to light, hormones, and stress. Real-time quantitative PCR indicated that GaZEP expression in the mutant was downregulated. The expression levels of GaZEP in roots and leaves were positively correlated with the root hair lengths and abscisic acid levels, respectively. Thus, in photosynthetic tissues, GaZEP mRNA levels might be regulated coordinately with variations in the abscisic acid levels. These results may assist in the further functional dissection of ZEP and in elucidating the molecular mechanism underlying sterile dwarfism in cotton.


Gossypium arboretum Sda Radiation mutation Deletion Abscisic acid Zeaxanthin epoxidase (ZEP) gene 



We thank Prof. Baomin Wang (China Agricultural University, Beijing, China) for endogenous hormone measurements. This work was supported by grants from the China Agriculture Research System (No. CARS-34-YZ4), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 30571184) and the National Key Technologies Research and Development (R&D) Program of China (No. 2004BA525B05-1).

Supplementary material

10725_2018_373_MOESM1_ESM.doc (238 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOC 238 KB)


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Agriculture Ministry Key Laboratory of Biology and Genetic Resources of Rubber Tree, Rubber Research InstituteChinese Academy of Tropical Agricultural Sciences (CATAS)DanzhouPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.National Key Laboratory of Crop Genetics and Germplasm Enhancement, Cotton Research InstituteNanjing Agricultural UniversityNanjingPeople’s Republic of China

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