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Plant J. 2005 Jul;43(2):299-308.

Virus-induced gene silencing in tomato fruit.

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1
Laboratory of Fruit Biology, College of Food Science & Nutritional Engineering, China Agricultural University, No. 17 Qinghua East Road, Beijing 100083, China.

Abstract

Virus-induced gene silencing (VIGS) is a powerful tool for the study of gene function in plants. Here we report that either by syringe-infiltrating the tobacco rattle virus (TRV)-vector into the surface, stem or carpopodium of a tomato fruit attached to the plant or by vacuum-infiltrating into a tomato fruit detached from the plant, TRV can efficiently spread and replicate in the tomato fruit. Although VIGS can be performed in tomato fruit by all of the means mentioned above, the most effective method is to inject the TRV-vector into the carpopodium of young fruit attached to the plant about 10 days after pollination. Several reporter genes related to ethylene responses and fruit ripening, including LeCTR1 and LeEILs genes, were also successfully silenced by this method during fruit development. In addition, we found that the silencing of the LeEIN2 gene results in the suppression of tomato fruit ripening. The results of our study indicate that the application of VIGS techniques by the described methods can be successfully applied to tomato fruit and is a valuable tool for studying functions of the relevant genes during fruit developing.

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