Overexpression of vesicle-associated membrane protein PttVAP27-17 as a tool to improve biomass production and the overall saccharification yields in Populus trees

In this study, we report on transgenic hybrid aspen lines that showed potential to increase biomass production both in the greenhouse and after 5 years of growth in the field

Madhavi Latha Gandla; Niklas Mähler; Sacha Escamez; Tomas Skotare; Ogonna Obudulu; Linus Möller; Ilka N. Abreu; Joakim Bygdell; Magnus Hertzberg; Torgeir R. Hvidsten; Thomas Moritz; Gunnar Wingsle; Johan Trygg; Hannele Tuominen; Leif J. Jönsson

2021

Scholarcy highlights

  • Bioconversion of wood into bioproducts and biofuels is hindered by the recalcitrance of woody raw material to bioprocesses such as enzymatic saccharification
  • A VAP27 gene family member is a candidate gene for improved saccharification In the course of our efforts to identify novel genes that improve bioprocessing properties of woody plants, we identified earlier a Populus tremula × tremuloides gene that encodes a member of the VAP27 gene family
  • Phylogenetic analysis of the corresponding Arabidopsis and P. trichocarpa proteins revealed a bigger group of proteins that included both the Arabidopsis subfamily I and III proteins and 11 homologous P. trichocarpa proteins, and a quite distantly related, smaller group containing the Arabidopsis subfamily II proteins together with six P. trichocarpa proteins
  • Since transgenic trees were created in this study to modify expression of the Potri.019G116400 homologue in P. tremula × tremuloides, which belongs to the smaller group, we focus here on the properties of the proteins in this group
  • Our study shows that overexpression of PttVAP27-17 has potential to improve growth and biomass production in greenhouse conditions and in the field, even though the results varied between the transgenic lines in the two different growth conditions
  • Overexpression of PttVAP27-17 in transgenic Populus trees was identified as a promising tool for such a strategy on the basis of experiments performed both in the greenhouse and on field conditions
  • Gene ontology analysis of all proteins with statistically significant changes in the PttVAP27-17 overexpressing transgenic lines compared to the wild type of greenhouse-grown trees

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