Dual Role for Phospholipid:Diacylglycerol Acyltransferase: Enhancing Fatty Acid Synthesis and Diverting Fatty Acids from Membrane Lipids to Triacylglycerol in Arabidopsis Leaves

Biosciences Department, Brookhaven National Laboratory, Upton, New York 11973.
The Plant Cell (Impact Factor: 9.34). 09/2013; 25(9). DOI: 10.1105/tpc.113.117358
Source: PubMed


There is growing interest in engineering green biomass to expand the production of plant oils as feed and biofuels. Here, we show that PHOSPHOLIPID:DIACYLGLYCEROL ACYLTRANSFERASE1 (PDAT1) is a critical enzyme involved in triacylglycerol (TAG) synthesis in leaves. Overexpression of PDAT1 increases leaf TAG accumulation, leading to oil droplet overexpansion through fusion. Ectopic expression of oleosin promotes the clustering of small oil droplets. Coexpression of PDAT1 with oleosin boosts leaf TAG content by up to 6.4% of the dry weight without affecting membrane lipid composition and plant growth. PDAT1 overexpression stimulates fatty acid synthesis (FAS) and increases fatty acid flux toward the prokaryotic glycerolipid pathway. In the trigalactosyldiacylglycerol1-1 mutant, which is defective in eukaryotic thylakoid lipid synthesis, the combined overexpression of PDAT1 with oleosin increases leaf TAG content to 8.6% of the dry weight and total leaf lipid by fourfold. In the plastidic glycerol-3-phosphate acyltransferase1 mutant, which is defective in the prokaryotic glycerolipid pathway, PDAT1 overexpression enhances TAG content at the expense of thylakoid membrane lipids, leading to defects in chloroplast division and thylakoid biogenesis. Collectively, these results reveal a dual role for PDAT1 in enhancing fatty acid and TAG synthesis in leaves and suggest that increasing FAS is the key to engineering high levels of TAG accumulation in green biomass.

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Available from: Xuebin Zhang, Jul 14, 2014
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