The vacuolar processing enzyme OsVPE1 is required for efficient glutelin processing in rice
Rice (Oryza sativa L.) accumulates prolamines and glutelins as its major storage proteins. Glutelins are synthesized on rough endoplasmic reticulum as 57-kDa precursors; they are then sorted into protein storage vacuoles where they are processed into acidic and basic subunits. We report a novel rice glutelin mutant, W379, which accumulates higher levels of the 57-kDa glutelin precursor. Genetic analysis revealed that the W379 phenotype is controlled by a single recessive nuclear gene. Using a map-based cloning strategy, we identified this gene, OsVPE1, which is a homolog of the Arabidopsis βVPE gene. OsVPE1 encodes a 497-amino-acid polypeptide. Nucleotide sequence analysis revealed a missense mutation in W379 that changes Cys269 to Gly. Like the wild-type protein, the mutant protein is sorted into vacuoles; however, the enzymatic activity of the mutant OsVPE1 is almost completely eliminated. Further, we show that OsVPE1 is incorrectly cleaved, resulting in a mature protein that is smaller than the wild-type mature protein. Taken together, these results demonstrate that OsVPE1 is a cysteine protease that plays a crucial role in the maturation of rice glutelins. Further, OsVPE1 Cys269 is a key residue for maintaining the Asn-specific cleavage activity of OsVPE1.
Document Type: Research Article
Affiliations: 1: National Key Laboratory for Crop Genetics and Germplasm Enhancement, Jiangsu Plant Gene Engineering Research Center, Nanjing Agricultural University, Nanjing 210095, China 2: National Key Facility for Crop Gene Resources and Genetic Improvement, Institute of Crop Science, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Beijing 100081, China
Publication date: May 1, 2009