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Identification and Characterization of PHT1 Transporters Family and Differential Expression Patterns in Control and Blindness Broccoli Plants
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1  Aquaporins Group. Plant Nutrition Department, Centro de Edafología y Biología Aplicada del Segura (CEBAS-CSIC), Campus Universitario de Espinardo, Edificio 25, 30100 Murcia, Spain
Academic Editor: Dimitris Bouranis


Phosphorus is predominantly taken up by the plant from the soil as its inorganic form (Pi). This is energy-consuming process carried out by a family of high-affinity Pi transporters (PHT). The PHT gene family play an important role on plant homeostasis and are essential for proper plant development and water uptake by aquaporins. The objective of the present study was the identification and characterisation of the PHT1 Pi transporters family in Brassica oleracea var. italica, broccoli plants. A total of 31 putative PHT1 gene sequences were identified in broccoli plants. PHT1 gene family were divided into nine subfamilies (PHT1,1 – PHT1;9) when compared with Arabidopsis thaliana, Brassica napus and Brassica oleracea var. oleracea according to phylogenetic analyses. Chromosomal distribution and duplication events were also studied. PHT1 protein gene products were also characterised, including subcellular location prediction, mostly of PHT1 proteins were predicted to be located in plasma membrane. On the other hand, structural estimations showed an overall common 3D structure. Furthermore, RNA sequencing expression of control and blinded broccoli plants (little plants aborting meristematic tissue) were carried out with different tissues in order to understand the implication of these transporters, PHT1, in broccoli blindness. Our results contribute to a better understanding of Pi transports within the broccoli plants and its possible implication on blindness disease.

Keywords: phosphorus transport; broccoli genome; broccoli rna-seq; plant nutrition