Biology

Omics Data Reveal Putative Regulators of Einkorn Grain Protein Composition under Sulfur Deficiency


Understanding the molecular mechanisms controlling the accumulation of grain storage proteins in response to nitrogen (N) and sulfur (S) nutrition is essential to improve cereal grain nutritional and functional properties. Here, we studied the grain transcriptome and metabolome responses to postanthesis N and S supply for the diploid wheat einkorn (Triticum monococcum). During grain filling, 848 transcripts and 24 metabolites were differentially accumulated in response to N and S availability. The accumulation of total free amino acids per grain and the expression levels of 241 genes showed significant modifications during most of the grain filling period and were upregulated in response to S deficiency. Among them, 24 transcripts strongly responded to S deficiency and were identified in coexpression network analyses as potential coordinators of the grain response to N and S supply. Sulfate transporters and genes involved in sulfate and Met metabolism were upregulated, suggesting regulation of the pool of free amino acids and of the grain N-to-S ratio. Several genes highlighted in this study might limit the impact of S deficiency on the accumulation of grain storage proteins.

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