Polygalacturonase (PG) is one of the cell wall hydrolytic enzymes involving in pectin degradation. A comparison of two highly conserved duplicated PG genes, namely, Brassica campestris Male Fertility 26a (BcMF26a) and BcMF26b, revealed the different features of their expression patterns and functions. We found that these two genes were orthologous genes of At4g33440, and they originated from a chromosomal segmental duplication. Although structurally similar, their regulatory and intron sequences largely diverged. QRT-PCR analysis showed that the expression level of BcMF26b was higher than that of BcMF26a in almost all the tested organs and tissues in Brassica campestris. Promoter activity analysis showed that, at reproductive development stages, BcMF26b promoter was active in tapetum, pollen grains, and pistils, whereas BcMF26a promoter was only active in pistils. In the subcellular localization experiment, BcMF26a and BcMF26b proteins could be localized to the cell wall. When the two genes were co-inhibited, pollen intine was formed abnormally and pollen tubes could not grow or stretch. Moreover, the knockout mutants of At4g33440 delayed the growth of pollen tubes. Therefore, BcMF26a/b can participate in the construction of pollen wall by modulating intine information and BcMF26b may play a major role in co-inhibiting transformed plants.
Lyu, M., Yu, Y., Jiang, J., Song, L., Liang, Y., Ma, Z., … Cao, J. (2015). BcMF26a and BcMF26b are duplicated polygalacturonase genes with divergent expression patterns and functions in pollen development and pollen tube formation in Brassica campestris. PLoS ONE, 10(7). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0131173