Journal of genetics and genomics = Yi chuan xue bao 2016
OspTAC2 encodes a pentatricopeptide repeat protein and regulates rice chloroplast development.
Functional chloroplast generation depends on the precise coordination of gene expression between the plastid and the nucleus and is essential for plant growth and development. In this study, a rice (Oryza sativa) mutant that exhibited albino and seedling-lethal phenotypes was isolated from a(60)Co-irradiated rice population. The mutant gene was identified as an ortholog of the Arabidopsis plastid transcriptionally active chromosome protein 2 (pTAC2) gene, and the mutant strain was designated osptac2. Sequence and transcription analyses showed that OspTAC2 encodes a putative chloroplast protein consisting of 10 pentratricopeptide repeat (PPR) domains and a C-terminal small MutS-related (SMR) domain. Cytological observations via microscopy showed that the OspTAC2-green fluorescent fusion protein is localized in the chloroplasts. Transmission electron microscopy revealed that the chloroplast of the osptac2 mutant lacks an organized thylakoid membrane. The transcript levels of all investigated PEP (plastid-encoded RNA polymerase)-dependent genes were dramatically reduced in the osptac2 mutant, whereas the transcript levels of NEP (nuclear-encoded polymerase)-dependent genes were increased. These results suggest that OspTAC2 plays a critical role in chloroplast development and indicate that the molecular function of the OspTAC2 gene is conserved in rice and Arabidopsis.