DOI: 10.1126/science.1068181 ISSN:

A MADS-Box Gene Necessary for Fruit Ripening at the Tomato Ripening-Inhibitor ( Rin ) Locus

Julia Vrebalov, Diane Ruezinsky, Veeraragavan Padmanabhan, Ruth White, Diana Medrano, Rachel Drake, Wolfgang Schuch, Jim Giovannoni
  • Multidisciplinary

Tomato plants harboring the ripening - inhibitor ( rin ) mutation yield fruits that fail to ripen. Additionally, rin plants display enlarged sepals and loss of inflorescence determinacy. Positional cloning of the rin locus revealed two tandem MADS-box genes ( LeMADS - RIN and LeMADS - MC ), whose expression patterns suggested roles in fruit ripening and sepal development, respectively. The rin mutation alters expression of both genes. Gene repression and mutant complementation demonstrate that LeMADS - RIN regulates ripening, whereas LeMADS - MC affects sepal development and inflorescence determinacy. LeMADS - RIN demonstrates an agriculturally important function of plant MADS-box genes and provides molecular insight into nonhormonal (developmental) regulation of ripening.

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