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J Exp Bot. 2009;60(3):1025-34. doi: 10.1093/jxb/ern347. Epub 2009 Jan 27.

Ubiquitous distribution and different subcellular localization of sorbitol dehydrogenase in fruit and leaf of apple.

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State Key Laboratory of Crop Biology, College of Life Sciences, Shandong Agricultural University, No. 61 Daizong Street, Taian 271018, PR China.


NAD(+)-dependent sorbitol dehydrogenase (NAD-SDH, EC, a key enzyme in sorbitol metabolism, plays an important role in regulating sink strength and determining the quality of apple fruit. Understanding the tissue and subcellular localization of NAD-SDH is helpful for understanding sorbitol metabolism in the apple. In this study, two NAD-SDH cDNA sequences were isolated from apple fruits (Malus domestica Borkh cv. Starkrimson) and named MdSDH5 and MdSDH6. Immunohistochemical analysis revealed that NAD-SDH is distributed in both the flesh and the vascular tissue of the fruit, and the vascular tissue and mesophyll tissue in the young and old leaves, indicating that it is a ubiquitous protein expressed in both sink and source organs. Immunogold electron microscopy analysis demonstrated that NAD-SDH is localized mainly in the cytoplasm and chloroplast of the fruit and leaves. The chloroplast localization of NAD-SDH was confirmed by the transient expression of MdSDH5-GFP and MdSDH6-GFP in the mesophyll protoplast of Arabidopsis. NAD-SDH was also found in electron opaque deposits of vacuoles in young and mature leaves. These data show that NAD-SDH has different subcellular localizations in fruit and leaves, indicating that it might play a different role in sorbitol metabolism in different tissues of apple.

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