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Phenotypic Characterization Of TransgenicMiscanthus SinensisPlants OverexpressingArabidopsisPhytochrome B

Ok-Jin Hwang, Soo-Hyun Lim, Yun-Jeong Han, Ah-Young Shin, Do-Soon Kim, Jeong-Il Kim

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Phytochromes are dimeric pigment proteins with reversible photochromism between red and far-red light-absorbing forms. They are photoreceptors that regulate various aspects of plant growth and development and have been used for biotechnological applications to improve agricultural performance of crops.Miscanthusspecies have been suggested as one of the most promising energy crops. In this paper,Arabidopsisphytochrome B(PHYB)gene was introduced intoMiscanthus sinensisusingAgrobacterium-mediated transformation method that we developed recently, with the herbicide resistance gene(BAR)as a selection marker. After putative transgenic plants were selected using the herbicide resistance assay, genomic integration of the transgene was confirmed by genomic PCR and Southern blot analysis, and transgene expression was validated by Northern blot analysis. Compared to nontransformed control plants, transgenic plants overexpressingPHYBshowed phenotypes with increased phytochrome B function, which includes increased chlorophyll content, decreased plant height, and delayed flowering. Therefore, these results suggest thatArabidopsisphytochrome B is functional inM. sinensisand provide a method to developMiscanthusvarieties with enhanced agricultural performance using phytochromes.