Modification of Proteins Encoded by Seed Storage Protein Genes

  • Brian A. Larkins
Part of the Basic Life Sciences book series (BLSC, volume 41)


It has been recognized for many years that seed proteins are deficient in amino acids that are “essential” for human and livestock nutrition (15). In general, cereals are most limiting in lysine while legumes are most limiting in the sulfur amino acids, methionine and cysteine. There has been only limited progress by plant breeders to increase the content of these amino acids in crops, primarily because genes encoding storage proteins with higher levels of essential amino acids do not normally exist. Therefore, genetic engineering of genes encoding seed storage proteins would provide a rather straightforward solution to the problem. But regardless of how straightforward the genetic engineering approach might be, it remains to be seen whether it will be practical.


Storage Protein Seed Protein Protein Body Seed Storage Protein Storage Protein Gene 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Anderson, O.D., J.C. Little, M.-F. Gautier, and F.C. Green (1984) Nucleic acid sequence and chromosome assignment of a wheat storage protein gene. Nucl. Acids Res. 12: 8129–8144.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Argos, P., K. Pedersen, M.D. Marks, and B.A. Larkins (1982) A structural model for maize zein proteins. J. Biol. Chem. 257: 9984–9990.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Baumlein, H., U. Wobus, J. Pustell, and F.C. Kafatos (1986) The legumin gene family: Structure of a B type gene of Vicia faba and a possible legumin gene specific regulatory element. Nucl. Acids Res. 14: 2707–2720.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Beachy, R.N., Z.-L. Chen, R.B. Horsch, S.B. Rogers, N.J. Hoffmann, and R.T. Fraley (1985) Accumulation and assembly of soybean ß-conglycinin in seeds of transformed petunia plants. EMBO J. 4: 3047–3053.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Bechtel, D.B., R.L. Gaines, and Y. Pomeranz (1982) Early stages in wheat endosperm formation and protein body initiation. Ann. Bot. 50: 507–518.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Cameron-Mills, V., and D. von Wettstein (1980) Protein body formation in the developing barley endosperm. Carlsberg Res. Commun. 45: 577–594.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Chrispeels, M.J., T.J.V. Higgins, and D. Spencer (1982) Assembly of storage protein oligomers in the endoplasmic retículum and processing of the polypeptides in protein bodies of developing pea cotyledons. J. Cell Biol. 93: 306–313.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Derbyshire, E., D.J. Wright, and D. Boulter (1976) Legumin and vicilin storage proteins of legume seeds. Phytochemistry 15: 3–24.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Doyle, J.J., M.A. Schuler, W.D. Godethe, V. Zenger, R.N. Beachy, and J.L. Slightom (1986) The glycosylated seed storage proteins of Glycine max and Phaseolus vulgarís: Structural homologies of genes and proteins. J. Biol. Chem. 261: 9228–9238.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Esen, A. (1986) Separation of alcohol-soluble proteins (zeins) from maize into three different fractions by differential solubility. Plant Physiol. 80: 623–627.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Forde, J., J.-H. Malpica, N.G. Halford, P.R. Shewry, 0.D. Anderson, F.C. Green, and B.J. Miflin (1985) The nucleotide sequence of a HMW glutenin subunit gene located on chromosome lA of wheat (Triticum aestinum L.). Nucl. Acids Res. 13: 6817–6832.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Galilí, G., E.E. Kawata, R.E. Cuellar, L.D. Smith, and B.A. Larkins (1986) Synthetic oligonucleotide tails inhibit in vitro and in vivo translation of zein mRNAs from maize endosperm. Nucl. Acids Res. 14: 1511–1524.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Hagen, G., and I. Rubenstein (1981) Complex organization of zein genes in maize. Gene 13: 239–249.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Larkins, B.A. (1981) Seed storage proteins: Characterization and biosynthesis. In The Biochemistry of Plants: A Comprehensive Treatise, Vol. VI. Proteins and Nucleic Acids, A. Marcus, ed. Academic Press, Inc., New York, pp. 449–489.Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Nelson, 0.E. (1979) Genetic modification of protein quality in plants. Adv. Agron. 21: 171–194.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Okita, T.W., V. Cheesbrough, and C.D. Reeves (1985) Evolution and heterogeneity of the a/ß-type and y-type gliadin DNA sequences. J. Biol. Chem. 260: 8203–8213.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Sengupta-Gopalan, C., N.A. Reichert, R.F. Barker, T.C. Hall, and J.D. Kemp (1985) Developmentally regulated expression of the bean ß-phaseolin gene in tobacco seed. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci., USA 82: 3320–3324.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Sugiyama, T., A. Rafalski, D. Peterson, and D. Soll (1985) A wheat HMW glutenin subunit gene reveals a highly repeated structure. Nucl. Acids Res. 13: 8729–8737.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Tatham, A.S., P.R. Shewry, and B.J. Miflin (1984) Wheat gluten elasticity: A similar molecular basis to elastin. FEBS Lett. 177: 205–208.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Wilson, D.R., and B.A. Larkins (1984) Zein gene organization in maize and related grasses. J. Mol. Evol. 29: 330–340.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1987

Authors and Affiliations

  • Brian A. Larkins
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Botany and Plant PathologyPurdue UniversityWest LafayetteUSA

Personalised recommendations