International Journal of Molecular Sciences (Mar 2019)

Transcriptome Analysis Reveals the Accumulation Mechanism of Anthocyanins in Buckwheat (<i>Fagopyrum esculentum</i> Moench) Cotyledons and Flowers

  • Zhengwu Fang,
  • Zehao Hou,
  • Shuping Wang,
  • Zhixiong Liu,
  • Shudong Wei,
  • Yingxin Zhang,
  • Jinghan Song,
  • Junliang Yin

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 20, no. 6
p. 1493


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Buckwheat (Fagopyrum esculentum) is a valuable crop which can produce multiple human beneficial secondary metabolites, for example, the anthocyanins in sprouts and flowers. However, as the predominant group of visible polyphenols in pigmentation, little is known about the molecular mechanisms underlying the anthocyanin biosynthesis within buckwheat. In this study, a comparative transcriptome analysis of green and red common buckwheat cultivars was carried out through RNA sequencing. Overall, 3727 and 5323 differently expressed genes (DEGs) were identified in flowers and cotyledons, respectively. Through GO and KEGG analysis, we revealed that DEGs in flowers and cotyledons are predominately involved in biosynthesis of anthocyanin. A total of 42 unigenes encoding 11 structural enzymes of the anthocyanin biosynthesis were identified as DEGs. We also identified some transcription factor families involved in the regulation of anthocyanin biosynthesis. Real-time qPCR validation of candidate genes was performed in flowers and cotyledons, and the results suggested that the high expression level of structural genes involved in anthocyanin biosynthetic pathway promotes anthocyanin accumulation. Our results provide the insight understanding for coloration of red common buckwheat.