Cloning and molecular characterization of three novel LMW-i glutenin subunit genes from cultivated einkorn (Triticum monococcum L.)

X. An, Q. Zhang, Y. Yan, Q. Li, Y. Zhang, A. Wang, Y. Pei, J. Tian, H. Wang, S. L.K. Hsam, F. J. Zeller

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Three novel low molecular weight (LMW) glutenin subunits from cultivated einkorn (Triticum monococcum L., AmAm, 2n = 2x = 14) were characterized by SDS-PAGE and molecular weights determined by MALDI-TOF-MS. Their coding genes were amplified and cloned with designed AS-PCR primers, revealing three complete gene sequences. All comprised upstream, open reading frame (ORF), downstream and no introns were present. The deduced amino acid sequences showed that all three genes, named as LMW-M1, LMW-M3 and LMW-M5, respectively, belonged to the LMW-i type subunits with the predicted molecular weight between 38.5206 and 38.7028 kDa. They showed high similarity with other LMW-i type genes from hexaploid bread wheats, but also displayed unique features. Particularly, LMW-M5 subunit contained an extra cysteine residue in the C-terminus except for eight conserved cysteines, which resulted from a single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) of the T-C transition, namely arginine → cysteine substitution at position 242 from the N-terminal end. This is the first report that the LMW-i subunit contained nine cysteines residues that could result in a more highly cross-linked and more elastic glutenin suggesting that LMW-M5 gene may associates with good quality properties. In addition, a total of 25 SNPs and one insertions/deletions (InDels) were detected among three LMW-i genes, which could result in significant functional changes in polymer formation of gluten. It is anticipated that these SNPs could be used as reliable genetic markers during wheat quality improvement. The phylogenetic analysis indicated that LMW-i type genes apparently differed from LMW-m and LMW-s type genes and diverged early from the primitive LMW-GS gene family, at about 12.92 million years ago (MYA) while the differentiation of Am and A genomes was estimated at 3.98 MYA.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)383-395
Number of pages13
JournalTheoretical and Applied Genetics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Aug 2006


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