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FEBS Lett. 1998 May 1;427(1):25-8.

Differences in chain length distribution of inulin from Cynara scolymus and Helianthus tuberosus are reflected in a transient plant expression system using the respective 1-FFT cDNAs.

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Max-Planck-Institut für Molekulare Pflanzenphysiologie, Golm, Germany.


A newly isolated cDNA clone, Cy3, encoding the fructan fructan 1-fructosyltransferase (1-FFT) from artichoke was expressed using tobacco protoplasts as expression system. Analysis of the inulin molecules synthesized upon incubation of protoplast extracts with a mixture of oligofructans (DP3-5) shows the production of inulins with a degree of polymerization (DP) of up to 23, whereas parallel experiments performed using a 1-FFT cDNA from Jerusalem artichoke led to the production of fructans with a DP of up to only 12. The results of in vitro fructan synthesis catalyzed by transiently expressed enzymes therefore reflect the difference of in vivo fructan composition of Jerusalem artichoke (M(DP) = 8-10) and artichoke (M(DP) = 65). These data suggest that the fructan pattern in a given species is mainly defined by the enzymatic characteristics of 1-FFT.

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