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Mol Cells. 2004 Apr 30;17(2):377-80.

A method of high frequency virus-induced gene silencing in chili pepper (Capsicum annuum L. cv. Bukang).

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Plant Genomics Laboratory, Genome Research Center, Korea Research Institute of Bioscience and Biotechnology, Daejeon 305-600, Korea.


Using a tobacco rattle virus (TRV)-based virus-induced gene silencing (VIGS) system, expression of phytogene desaturase (PDS) and ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase small-subuit (rbcS) genes was suppressed in Nicotiana benthamiana and pepper plants (Capsicum annuum L. cv. Bukang). The silenced phenotypes of pale yellow (rbcS), and photobleached leaves (PDS), were invariably obvious 2 weeks after inoculation with the TRV-based vector. In a parallel experiment, the same set of genes was silenced in N. benthamiana and yielded identical phenotypes to pepper 1 week after inoculation. Northern blot analyses showed that the endogenous levels of CarbcS and CaPDS transcripts were dramatically reduced in the silenced leaf tissues. These observations confirm that the silenced phenotype is closely correlated with the pattern of tissue expression. To our knowledge, this is the first high frequency VIGS method in pepper plants. It should provide a tool for large-scale gene silencing studies in pepper functional genomics.

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