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Phytochemistry. 2007 Mar;68(6):797-801. Epub 2007 Jan 26.

Reduction of divinyl ether-containing polyunsaturated fatty acids in transgenic potato plants.

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  • 1Department of Stress and Developmental Biology, Leibniz Institute of Plant Biochemistry, Weinberg 3, D-06120 Halle/Saale, Germany.


Oxygenated polyunsaturated fatty acids synthesized via the lipoxygenase pathway play a role in plant responses to pathogen attack. In solanaceous plants, the preferential stimulation of the 9-lipoxygenase pathway in response to pathogen infection leads to the formation of the divinyl ether-containing polyunsaturated fatty acids colneleic and colnelenic acid, as well as hydroxy and trihydroxy polyunsaturated fatty acids. To functionally assess the role of divinyl ethers, transgenic potato plants were generated which express an RNA interference construct directed against the pathogen-inducible 9-divinyl ether synthase. Efficient reduction of 9-divinyl ether synthase transcript accumulation correlated with reduced levels of colneleic and colnelenic acid. However, in response to infection with virulent Phytophthora infestans, the causal agent of late blight disease, no significant differences in pathogen biomass could be detected suggesting that the levels of antimicrobial divinyl ethers are not critical for defense against Phytophthora infestans in a compatible interaction.

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