Dual DNA binding specificity of a petal epidermis-specific MYB transcription factor (MYB.Ph3) from Petunia hybrida

EMBO J. 1995 Apr 18;14(8):1773-84.


The MYB.Ph3 protein recognized two DNA sequences that resemble the two known types of MYB DNA binding site: consensus I (MBSI), aaaAaaC(G/C)-GTTA, and consensus II (MBSII), aaaAGTTAGTTA. Optimal MBSI was recognized by animal c-MYB and not by Am305 from Antirrhinum, whereas MBSII showed the reverse behaviour. Different constraints on MYB.Ph3 binding to the two classes of sequences were demonstrated. DNA binding studies with mutated MBSI and MBSII and hydroxyl radical footprinting analysis, pointed to the N-terminal MYB repeat (R2) as the most involved in determining the dual DNA binding specificity of MYB.Ph3 and supported the idea that binding to MBSI and MBSII does not involve alternative orientations of the two repeats of MYB.Ph3. Minimal promoters containing either MBSI and MBSII were activated to the same extent by MYB.Ph3 in yeast, indicating that both types of binding site can be functionally equivalent. MYB.Ph3 binding sites are present in the promoter of flavonoid biosynthetic genes, such as the Petunia chsJ gene, which was transcriptionally activated by MYB.Ph3 in tobacco protoplasts. MYB.Ph3 was immunolocalized in the epidermal cell layer of petals, where flavonoid biosynthetic genes are actively expressed. This strongly suggests a role for MYB.Ph3 in the regulation of flavonoid biosynthesis.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acyltransferases / genetics
  • Base Sequence
  • Binding Sites / genetics
  • Conserved Sequence
  • DNA Mutational Analysis
  • DNA, Plant / genetics
  • DNA, Plant / metabolism*
  • DNA-Binding Proteins / genetics
  • DNA-Binding Proteins / isolation & purification
  • DNA-Binding Proteins / metabolism*
  • Escherichia coli / genetics
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Plant Proteins / genetics
  • Plant Proteins / metabolism*
  • Plants / genetics*
  • Plants, Toxic
  • Promoter Regions, Genetic / genetics
  • Protein Binding
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-myb*
  • Recombinant Proteins / metabolism
  • Tissue Distribution
  • Tobacco / genetics
  • Transcription Factors / genetics
  • Transcription Factors / isolation & purification
  • Transcription Factors / metabolism*
  • Transcription, Genetic
  • Yeasts / genetics


  • DNA, Plant
  • DNA-Binding Proteins
  • Plant Proteins
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-myb
  • Recombinant Proteins
  • Transcription Factors
  • Acyltransferases
  • flavanone synthetase