Sequestration of auxin by the indole-3-acetic acid-amido synthetase GH3-1 in grape berry (Vitis vinifera L.) and the proposed role of auxin conjugation during ripening.J Exp Bot. 2010 Aug; 61(13):3615-25.JE
In fleshy fruit, levels of indole-3-acetic acid (IAA), the most abundant auxin, decline towards the onset of ripening. The application of auxins to immature fruit can delay the ripening processes. However, the mechanisms by which the decrease in endogenous IAA concentrations and the maintenance of low auxin levels in maturing fruit are achieved remain elusive. The transcript of a GH3 gene (GH3-1), encoding for an IAA-amido synthetase which conjugates IAA to amino acids, was detected in grape berries (Vitis vinifera L.). GH3-1 expression increased at the onset of ripening (veraison), suggesting that it might be involved in the establishment and maintenance of low IAA concentrations in ripening berries. Furthermore, this grapevine GH3 gene, responded positively to the combined application of abscisic acid and sucrose and to ethylene, linking it to the control of ripening processes. Levels of IAA-aspartic acid (IAA-Asp), an in vitro product of recombinant GH3-1, rose after veraison and remained high during the following weeks of the ripening phase when levels of free IAA were low. A similar pattern of changes in free IAA and IAA-Asp levels was detected in developing tomatoes (Solanum lycopersicum Mill.), where low concentrations of IAA and an increase in IAA-Asp concentrations coincided with the onset of ripening in this climacteric fruit. Since IAA-Asp might be involved in IAA degradation, the GH3 catalysed formation of this conjugate at, and after, the onset of ripening could represent a common IAA inactivation mechanism in climacteric and non-climacteric fruit which enables ripening.