Ectopic expression of NtEF1 and NtEF2 promotes flowering and alters floral organ identity in Nicotiana tabacum

Ji Min Shin, Sang Gyu Seo, Ji Seong Kim, Haerim Jang, Mi Rae Shin, Chanhui Lee, Sun Hyung Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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A previous study revealed that IbEF1 from sweet potato promoted early flowering in transgenic tobacco and acted as a novel regulator involved in flowering time control. Two putative ortholog genes were found in N. tabacum:NtEF1 and NtEF2. Subcellular localization of NtEF1 and NtEF2 with an in vivo targeting approach revealed that NtEF1 and NtEF2 were correctly targeted to the cytosol in protoplasts when expressed as a green fluorescent fusion protein (GFP). NtEF1 and NtEF2 are not thought to act as transcription factors. In this study, the expression of NtEF2 was compared with that of NtEF1 in the apical buds of N. tabacum of various ages. NtEF2 was only detected in open flowers that were 100 days old, whereas NtEF1 was expressed in apical buds of 60-, 70-, 80-, 90- and 100-day-old plants. NtEF1 was expressed in all floral organs, although its level of expression varied in sepals, petals, stamens and carpels. In contrast, NtEF2 mRNA expression was only detected in the sepals. Transgenic tobacco plants overexpressing NtEF1 and NtEF2 were generated to elucidate the physiological function of NtEF1 and NtEF2. The 35S::NtEF1 and 35S::NtEF2 transgenic lines showed early-flowering phenotypes. Moreover, the constitutive expression of NtEF1 and NtEF2 occasionally engendered an abnormal morphological alteration of anthers. It is assumed that there are only a few differential flowering regulations occurring in tobacco compared to Arabidopsis, indicating that NtEF1 and NtEF2 interfere with the flowering time and floral development.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11-26
Number of pages16
JournalPlant Biotechnology Reports
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2015


  • Early flowering
  • Flowering time
  • Nicotiana tabacum
  • NtEF1
  • NtEF2
  • NtMADS5


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