A Phytochrome Mediated Effect of Light on the Hydroxylation Pattern of Flavonoids in Pisum sativum var. ‘Alaska’


THE presence of a kaempferol triglucoside (KG) and a quercetin triglucoside (QG), and of their p-coumaric acid esters (KGC and QGC respectively), in white-light-grown ‘Alaska’ peas has been reported1. Evidence has also been put forward that etiolated peas contain only the kaempferol derivatives (KG and KGC), and that low irradiances of red light cause an increased synthesis of KGC in the terminal bud2,3—this effect being reversible by subsequent irradiation with far-red light3. A role for the phytochrome system in the light-mediated synthesis of flavonoids has been proposed for several other plants4–6. In a continuation of the work of Furuya and Thomas3, we have obtained evidence that the variations in flavonoid pigments with red light are due to increases in the rate of synthesis of the quercetin derivative (QGC) while the KGC concentration, in fact, remains relatively constant. This effect on QGC synthesis is reversible by far red light and is consequently thought to be a phytochrome effect.

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  1. 1

    Furuya, M., Galston, A. W., and Stowe, B. B., Nature, 193, 456 (1962).

  2. 2

    Mumford, F. E., Smith, D. H., and Castle, J. R., Plant Physiol., 36, 752 (1961).

  3. 3

    Furuya, M., and Thomas, R. G., Plant Physiol., 39, 634 (1964).

  4. 4

    Piringer, A. A., and Heinze, P. H., Plant Physiol., 29, 467 (1954).

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    Mohr, H., Planta, 49, 389 (1957).

  6. 6

    Downs, R. J., and Siegelman, H. W., Plant Physiol., 38, 25 (1963).

  7. 7

    Stafford, H., Plant Physiol., 40, 130 (1965).

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BOTTOMLEY, W., SMITH, H. & GALSTON, A. A Phytochrome Mediated Effect of Light on the Hydroxylation Pattern of Flavonoids in Pisum sativum var. ‘Alaska’. Nature 207, 1311–1312 (1965). https://doi.org/10.1038/2071311b0

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