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Thesis

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The flavour or fragrance of Basmati rice is associated with the presence of 2-acetyl-1- pyrroline. This work shows that a gene with homology to betaine aldehyde dehydrogenase (BAD) has significant polymorphisms in the coding region of fragrant genotypes relative to non fragrant genotypes. Accumulation of 2-acetyl-1-pyrroline in fragrant rice genotypes may be explained by the presence of mutations resulting in loss of function of the fgr gene product. The fgr gene corresponds to the gene encoding BAD2 in rice while BAD1 is encoded by a gene on chromosome 4. Development of an allele specific amplification (ASA) based around the deletion in the gene encoding BAD2 allows, perfect, simple and low cost discrimination between fragrant and non-fragrant rice varieties and identifies homozygous fragrant, homozygous non-fragrant and heterozygous non-fragrant individuals in a population segregating for fragrance. The cDNAs transcribed from rice chromosomes 4 and 8, each encoding an enzyme with homology to betaine aldehyde dehydrogenase were cloned and expressed in E. coli. The enzyme responsible for fragrance, encoded from chromosome 8, had optimum activity at pH 10, showed low affinity towards betaine aldehyde (bet-ald) with Km value of approximately 63μM but a higher affinity towards γ-aminobutyraldehyde (GABald) with a Km value of approximately 9μM. The enzyme encoded from chromosome 4 had optimum activity at pH 9.5 and showed generally lower affinity towards most substrates compared to the enzyme encoded from chromosome 8, substrate specificities suggest that the enzymes have higher specificity to aminoaldehydes and as such both should be renamed as an aminoaldehyde dehydrogenase (AAD). The inactivation of AAD2 (BAD2) in fragrant rice varieties likely leads to accumulation of its main substrate GABald which then cyclises to Δ¹-pyrroline the immediate precursor of 2AP.

Copyright LMT Bradbury 2009

Abstract

The flavour or fragrance of Basmati rice is associated with the presence of 2-acetyl-1- pyrroline. This work shows that a gene with homology to betaine aldehyde dehydrogenase (BAD) has significant polymorphisms in the coding region of fragrant genotypes relative to non fragrant genotypes. Accumulation of 2-acetyl-1-pyrroline in fragrant rice genotypes may be explained by the presence of mutations resulting in loss of function of the fgr gene product. The fgr gene corresponds to the gene encoding BAD2 in rice while BAD1 is encoded by a gene on chromosome 4. Development of an allele specific amplification (ASA) based around the deletion in the gene encoding BAD2 allows, perfect, simple and low cost discrimination between fragrant and non-fragrant rice varieties and identifies homozygous fragrant, homozygous non-fragrant and heterozygous non-fragrant individuals in a population segregating for fragrance. The cDNAs transcribed from rice chromosomes 4 and 8, each encoding an enzyme with homology to betaine aldehyde dehydrogenase were cloned and expressed in E. coli. The enzyme responsible for fragrance, encoded from chromosome 8, had optimum activity at pH 10, showed low affinity towards betaine aldehyde (bet-ald) with Km value of approximately 63ìM but a higher affinity towards -aminobutyraldehyde (GABald) with a Km value of approximately 9ìM. The enzyme encoded from chromosome 4 had optimum activity at pH 9.5 and showed generally lower affinity towards most substrates compared to the enzyme encoded from chromosome 8, substrate specificities suggest that the enzymes have higher specificity to aminoaldehydes and as such both should be renamed as an aminoaldehyde dehydrogenase (AAD). The inactivation of AAD2 (BAD2) in fragrant rice varieties likely leads to accumulation of its main substrate GABald which then cyclises to Δ¹-pyrroline the immediate precursor of 2AP.

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