Sequence variation of chalcone synthase gene in a spontaneous white-flower mutant of Chinese cabbage-pak-choi

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A spontaneous white-flower mutant of Chinese cabbage-pak-choi (Brassica campestris ssp. chinenesis, syn. B. rapa ssp. chinenesis) was found in our test fields, and all the plant characters except flower color were identical with wild type ones. We hypothesized that a mutational event had occurred in the gene coding for chalcone synthase (CHS), the key enzyme of flavonoid biosynthesis pathway. Two genes, later designated BcCHS and BcCHS-wf, were isolated from wild type and mutant Chinese cabbage-pak-choi, respectively, using gene-specific primer pairs. Comparison of the genomic sequences revealed two mutations in BcCHS-wf, both with A to G transitions, one at position +37 bp and the other at +970 bp. Both nucleotide substitutions occurred in AGA codes for arginine into GGA for glycin at residue +13 and into AGC coding for serine at residue +229, respectively. Homologous genes of BcCHS were isolated from another four cruciferous plants, though there were some differences among the genomic and deduced amino acid sequences, the mutation locus of the mutant, as we called it, were identical to the wild type Chinese cabbage-pak-choi.

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