Structural organization of the barley D-hordein locus in comparison with its orthologous regions of wheat genomes

Genome. 2003 Dec;46(6):1084-97. doi: 10.1139/g03-071.


D hordein, a prolamin storage protein of barley endosperms, is highly homologous to the high molecular weight (HWM) glutenin subunits, which are the major determinants of bread-making quality in wheat flour. In hexaploid wheat (AABBDD), each genome contains two paralogous copies of HMW-glutenin genes that encode the x- and y-type HMW-glutenin subunits. Previously, we reported the sequence analysis of a 102-kb genomic region that contains the HMW-glutenin locus of the D genome from Aegilops tauschii, the donor of the D genome of hexaploid wheat. Here, we present the sequence analysis of a 120-kb D-hordein region of the barley genome, a more distantly related member of the Triticeae grass tribe. Comparative sequence analysis revealed that gene content and order are generally conserved. Genes included in both of these orthologous regions are arranged in the following order: a Xa21-like receptor kinase, an endosperm globulin, an HMW prolamin, and a serine (threonine) protein kinase. However, in the wheat D genome, a region containing both the globulin and HMW-glutenin gene was duplicated, indicating that this duplication event occurred after the separation of the wheat and barley genomes. The intergenic regions are divergent with regard to the sequence and structural organization. It was found that different types of retroelements are responsible for the intergenic structure divergence in the wheat and barley genomes. In the barley region, we identified 16 long terminal repeat (LTR) retrotransposons in three distinct nested clusters. These retroelements account for 63% of the contig sequence. In addition, barley D hordein was compared with wheat HMW glutenins in terms of cysteine residue conservation and repeat domain organization.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Base Sequence
  • Chromosomes, Artificial, Bacterial / genetics
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • DNA, Intergenic / genetics
  • DNA, Plant / chemistry
  • DNA, Plant / genetics
  • Genes, Plant / genetics
  • Genome, Plant*
  • Glutens / analogs & derivatives*
  • Glutens / chemistry
  • Glutens / genetics
  • Hordeum / genetics*
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Molecular Weight
  • Plant Proteins / genetics*
  • Repetitive Sequences, Nucleic Acid / genetics
  • Retroelements / genetics
  • Sequence Alignment
  • Sequence Analysis, DNA
  • Sequence Homology, Amino Acid
  • Triticum / genetics*


  • DNA, Intergenic
  • DNA, Plant
  • Plant Proteins
  • Retroelements
  • Glutens
  • glutenin

Associated data

  • GENBANK/AY268139