A phosphofructokinase B-type carbohydrate kinase family protein, PFKB1, is essential for chloroplast development at early seedling stage in rice

Plant Sci. 2020 Jan:290:110295. doi: 10.1016/j.plantsci.2019.110295. Epub 2019 Oct 6.


Among the phosphofructokinase B-type carbohydrate kinase (PCK) family proteins, only few proteins, like the FRUCTOKINASE-LIKE 1 and 2, have been functionally characterized in regulation of chloroplast development. Here, we report the involvement of a PCK protein PFKB1 in chloroplast development by identification of a new rice mutant, revertible early yellowing Kitaake 2 [rey(k2)]. The mutant rey(k2) shows yellow leaf phenotype, reduced photosynthetic pigments, and retarded chloroplast development during early stages of seedlings, but gradually recovered at later stages. The phenotype of rey(k2) is resulted from the disruption of the PFKB1 protein. The Pfkb1 gene is ubiquitously expressed, and its protein is mainly targeted to the chloroplast and, in some cells, to the nucleus. In addition, the PFKB1 protein possesses phosphofructokinase activity in vitro. The rey(k2) mutant affects RNA levels of chloroplast-associated genes. In particular, the nuclear-encoded RNA polymerase (NEP)-dependent genes are expressed at a sustained high level in rey(k2) even after turning green, indicating that PFKB1 is essential for suppressing the expression of NEP-dependent genes. Taken together, our study suggests that PFKB1 functions as a novel regulator indispensable for early chloroplast development, at least partly by regulating chloroplast-associated genes.

Keywords: Chloroplast development; Phosphofructokinase activity; Photosynthetic pigments; Revertible early yellowing; Rice.

MeSH terms

  • Chloroplasts / genetics
  • Chloroplasts / metabolism*
  • Oryza / cytology
  • Oryza / genetics*
  • Oryza / growth & development
  • Plant Proteins / genetics*
  • Plant Proteins / metabolism
  • Seedlings / cytology
  • Seedlings / genetics
  • Seedlings / growth & development


  • Plant Proteins