Morphological changes and hypomethylation of DNA in transgenic tobacco expressing antisense RNA of the S-adenosyl-L-homocysteine hydrolase gene

Plant Mol Biol. 1997 Dec;35(6):981-6. doi: 10.1023/a:1005896711321.


S-adenosyl-L-homocysteine hydrolase (SAHH) is a key enzyme in the regulation of intracellular methylation reactions. To investigate the role of SAHH in methylation reactions and morphogenesis in planta, we have made transgenic plants expressing antisense RNA of tobacco SAHH. The transgenic plants displayed distinct morphological changes including a floral homeotic change. We hypothesized that the changes were caused by increased levels of cytokinin. In those transgenic plants, we observed that a repetitive DNA sequence appeared less methylated than controls. We speculated that altered gene expressions by the hypomethylation of DNA might be involved in the changes.

MeSH terms

  • Adenosylhomocysteinase
  • DNA Methylation*
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Enzymologic
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Plant
  • Hydrolases / biosynthesis
  • Hydrolases / genetics*
  • Hydrolysis
  • Plants, Genetically Modified
  • Plants, Toxic*
  • RNA, Antisense / biosynthesis*
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • RNA, Plant / biosynthesis
  • RNA, Plant / genetics*
  • Tobacco / enzymology*
  • Tobacco / genetics*
  • Tobacco / growth & development


  • RNA, Antisense
  • RNA, Messenger
  • RNA, Plant
  • Hydrolases
  • Adenosylhomocysteinase