Project description:Background:Passion fruit (Passiflora edulis Sims) is an important horticultural crop in the tropics and subtropics, where it has great commercial potential due to high demand for fresh edible fruits and processed juice as well as source of raw materials in cosmetic industries. Genetic engineering shows great potential in passion fruit improvement and can compensate for the limitations of conventional breeding. Despite the success achieved in genetic modification of few passion fruit varieties, transgenic passion fruit production is still difficult for farmer-preferred cultivars. Therefore, it is important to establish a simple and fast Agrobacterium-mediated cell transformation of commercial hybrid passion fruit KPF4 (Passiflora edulis f. edulis?×?Passiflora edulis f. flavicarpa). Results:In the present study, we have developed a simple and fast Agrobacterium-mediated transformation system for hybrid passion fruit KPF4 using leaf disc explants. Factors affecting the rate of transient beta (?)-glucuronidase (gusA) expression and consequently transformation efficiency were optimized as follows: Agrobacterium cell density with an OD600 of 0.5, 30 min infection time, 3 days of co-cultivation duration and the incorporation of 200 µM acetosyringone into Agrobacterium infection suspension medium. Using the optimized conditions, transgenic plants of KPF4 were produced within 2 months with an average transformation efficiency of 0.67%. The ?-glucuronidase (GUS) histochemical staining confirmed the expression and integration of an intron-containing gusA gene into transformed leaf discs and transgenic plant lines of KPF4. The presence of gusA gene in the transgenic plants was confirmed by polymerase chain reaction (PCR). The results confirmed that the gusA gene was efficiently integrated into the passion fruit genome. Conclusions:The developed transformation protocol is simple and rapid and could be useful for functional genomic studies and transferring agronomically important traits into passion fruit hybrid KPF4. This study developed a method that can be used to transfer traits such as resistance to viral diseases, low fruit quality and short storage life. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report on genetic transformation system for commercial passion fruit hybrid KPF4.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Passiflora edulis, known as passion fruit and native to South America, is now widely cultivated throughout southern China for its edible value, medicinal efficacy and ornamental properties. We have developed a cold-tolerant variety of P. edulis ('Pingtang 1') that can survive subzero temperatures and is highly adaptable in Karst areas. In this study, cuttings of 'Pingtang 1' were cultivated in a limestone (L) rocky desertification area and a sandy dolomite (D) rock desertification area. Changes in nutrient elements in both the soils and plants were revealed in the two plots. Moreover, RNA sequencing (RNA-Seq) was performed to profile the root transcriptomes for further exploration of nutrient adaptative mechanism of Passiflora edulis in Karst regions. RESULTS:In this study, a total of, 244,705,162 clean reads were generated from four cDNA libraries and assembled into 84,198 unigenes, of which 56,962 were annotated by publicly available databases. Transcriptome profiles were generated, and 1314 unigenes (531 upregulated and 801 downregulated) were significantly differentially expressed between the L and D root cDNA libraries (L_R and D_R, respectively); these profiles provide a global overview of the gene expression patterns associated with P. edulis adaptability to Karst soils. Most unigenes including a number of differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were involved in nutrient element uptake, utilization, signal regulation. And DEGs enriched in KEGG pathways of plant hormone signal transduction, phenylpropanoid biosynthesis, and biosynthesis of unsaturated fatty acids were significantly expressed. CONCLUSION:These results could contribute to better understanding the adaptation of this species to environmental stress and thus enhance the potential for successfully introducing and commercially deploying P. edulis.
Project description:Passiflora (passionflowers) makes an excellent model for studying plant evolutionary development. They are mostly perennial climbers that display axillary tendrils, which are believed to be modifications of the inflorescence. Passionflowers are also recognized by their unique flower features, such as the extra whorls of floral organs composed of corona filaments and membranes enclosing the nectary. Although some work on Passiflora organ ontogeny has been done, the developmental identity of both Passiflora tendrils and the corona is still controversial. Here, we combined ultrastructural analysis and expression patterns of the flower meristem and floral organ identity genes of the MADS-box AP1/FUL clade to reveal a possible role for these genes in the generation of evolutionary novelties in Passiflora.We followed the development of structures arising from the axillary meristem from juvenile to adult phase in P. edulis. We further assessed the expression pattern of P. edulis AP1/FUL homologues (PeAP1 and PeFUL), by RT-qPCR and in situ hybridization in several tissues, correlating it with the developmental stages of P. edulis. PeAP1 is expressed only in the reproductive stage, and it is highly expressed in tendrils and in flower meristems from the onset of their development. PeAP1 is also expressed in sepals, petals and in corona filaments, suggesting a novel role for PeAP1 in floral organ diversification. PeFUL presented a broad expression pattern in both vegetative and reproductive tissues, and it is also expressed in fruits.Our results provide new molecular insights into the morphological diversity in the genus Passiflora. Here, we bring new evidence that tendrils are part of the Passiflora inflorescence. This points to the convergence of similar developmental processes involving the recruitment of genes related to flower identity in the origin of tendrils in different plant families. The data obtained also support the hypothesis that the corona filaments are likely sui generis floral organs. Additionally, we provide an indication that PeFUL acts as a coordinator of passionfruit development.
Project description:A variety of neuroactive flavonoids can be found in the species of the Passiflora genus; however, their difficulty in crossing the blood-brain barrier limits their in vivo neuropharmacological activity. In this study, cationic nanoparticles were developed as a novel nanocarrier for improving the antidepressant activity of Passiflora edulis f. flavicarpa leaf extract. Formulations obtained using Eudragit E PO polymethylmethacrylate copolymer, as polymeric matrix had their physicochemical properties investigated. The analytical content of the flavonoids vicenin-2, orientin, isoorientin, vitexin, and isovitexin was determined in the plant extract. Small-sized and spherical nanoparticles loaded with Passiflora edulis f. flavicarpa were obtained with positive zeta potential and high encapsulation efficiency. In addition, the nanosystems were shown to be stable for at least 6 months. The antidepressant activity of P. edulis extract (50 and 100 mg/kg) as well as the extract-loaded nanoparticles (5 mg/kg) were investigated in mice using the forced swimming test, where the latter increased the potency of the former by 10-fold. In addition, histopathological and biochemical analysis confirmed the biocompatibility of the extract-loaded nanoparticles. This study demonstrated that the Eudragit cationic nanoparticles were able to improve the antidepressant activity of P. edulis in the central nervous system of mice.
Project description:Passiflora edulis is the most widely cultivated species of passionflowers, cropped mainly for industrialized juice production and fresh fruit consumption. Despite its commercial importance, little is known about the genome structure of P. edulis. To fill in this gap in our knowledge, a genomic library was built, and now completely sequenced over 100 large-inserts. Sequencing data were assembled from long sequence reads, and structural sequence annotation resulted in the prediction of about 1,900 genes, providing data for subsequent functional analysis. The richness of repetitive elements was also evaluated. Microsyntenic regions of P. edulis common to Populus trichocarpa and Manihot esculenta, two related Malpighiales species with available fully sequenced genomes were examined. Overall, gene order was well conserved, with some disruptions of collinearity identified as rearrangements, such as inversion and translocation events. The microsynteny level observed between the P. edulis sequences and the compared genomes is surprising, given the long divergence time that separates them from the common ancestor. P. edulis gene-rich segments are more compact than those of the other two species, even though its genome is much larger. This study provides a first accurate gene set for P. edulis, opening the way for new studies on the evolutionary issues in Malpighiales genomes.