Rice (Oryza sativa) is sensitive to salinity, but the salt tolerance level differs among cultivars, which might result from natural variations in the genes that are responsible for salt tolerance. High-affinity potassium transporter (HKTs) has been proven to be involved in salt tolerance in plants. Therefore, we screened for natural nucleotide polymorphism in the coding sequence of OsHKT1, which encodes the HKT protein in eight Vietnamese rice cultivars differing in salt tolerance level. In total, seven nucleotide substitutions in coding sequence of OsHKT1 were found, including two non-synonymous and five synonymous substitutions. Further analysis revealed that these two non-synonymous nucleotide substitutions (G50T and T1209A) caused changes in amino acids (Gly17Val and Asp403Glu) at signal peptide and the loop of the sixth transmembrane domain, respectively. To assess the potential effect of these substitutions on the protein function, the 3D structure of HKT protein variants was modelled by using PHYRE2 webserver. The results showed that no difference was observed when compared those predicted 3D structure of HKT protein variants with each other. In addition, the codon bias of synonymous substitutions cannot clearly show correlation with salt tolerance level. It might be interesting to further investigate the functional roles of detected non-synonymous substitutions as it might correlate to salt tolerance in rice.
Quynh-Hoa, P., Xuan-An, T., Thi-Nha-Trang, N., Thi-Thuy-Anh, T., Hai-Yen, H., Thi-Hong-Van, N., … Thi-Phuc, D. (2016). Investigation of Polymorphisms in Coding Region of OsHKT1 in Relation to Salinity in Rice. Rice Science, 23(6), 334–338. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.rsci.2016.05.004