Dosage differences in 12-OXOPHYTODIENOATE REDUCTASE genes modulate wheat root growth

Nat Commun. 2023 Feb 1;14(1):539. doi: 10.1038/s41467-023-36248-y.


Wheat, an essential crop for global food security, is well adapted to a wide variety of soils. However, the gene networks shaping different root architectures remain poorly understood. We report here that dosage differences in a cluster of monocot-specific 12-OXOPHYTODIENOATE REDUCTASE genes from subfamily III (OPRIII) modulate key differences in wheat root architecture, which are associated with grain yield under water-limited conditions. Wheat plants with loss-of-function mutations in OPRIII show longer seminal roots, whereas increased OPRIII dosage or transgenic over-expression result in reduced seminal root growth, precocious development of lateral roots and increased jasmonic acid (JA and JA-Ile). Pharmacological inhibition of JA-biosynthesis abolishes root length differences, consistent with a JA-mediated mechanism. Transcriptome analyses of transgenic and wild-type lines show significant enriched JA-biosynthetic and reactive oxygen species (ROS) pathways, which parallel changes in ROS distribution. OPRIII genes provide a useful entry point to engineer root architecture in wheat and other cereals.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Cyclopentanes / metabolism
  • Cyclopentanes / pharmacology
  • Oxidoreductases Acting on CH-CH Group Donors* / genetics
  • Oxidoreductases Acting on CH-CH Group Donors* / metabolism
  • Oxylipins / metabolism
  • Plant Roots* / metabolism
  • Reactive Oxygen Species / metabolism
  • Triticum / physiology


  • 12-oxophytodienoate reductase
  • Reactive Oxygen Species
  • Oxidoreductases Acting on CH-CH Group Donors
  • Cyclopentanes
  • Oxylipins