Peptide-based plastid modification for rapid engineering of targeted DNA

October 23, 2019

RIKEN CSRS researchers have discovered that combining two types of functional peptides allows the introduction of DNA into various plant plastids.

Genes and proteins are conventionally introduced into plastids by the particle bombardment method. Because such methods are only incidentally successful with limited plant species, there is still space to improve the efficiency of introducing DNA into plastids.

RIKEN CSRS researchers looked for a more efficient way to introduce plasmid DNA into plant plastids using a complex that clusters a cell-penetrating peptide and a chloroplast transit peptide with a polycationic sequence. With this complex, they were successfully able to selectively engineer chloroplasts, chromoplasts and amyloplasts, which were confirmed with significant expression of the reporter gene.

The results of this research offer promise as a technology to accelerate the production of plastidbased production of compounds and plastid-related gene analysis.

Original article
Advanced Science doi:10.1002/advs.201902064
C. Thagun, J.-A. Chuah, K. Numata,
"Targeted gene delivery into various plastids mediated by clustered cell-penetrating and chloroplast-targeting peptides".
Keiji Numata
Team Leader
Biomacromolecules Research Team