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Evolution of substrate recognition across a multigene family of glycosyltransferases in Arabidopsis

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article


  • E K Lim
  • S Baldauf
  • Y Li
  • L Elias
  • D Worrall
  • S P Spencer
  • R G Jackson
  • G Taguchi
  • J Ross
  • D J Bowles
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>2002
Issue number3
Number of pages7
Pages (from-to)139-145
<mark>Original language</mark>English


The complete sequence of the Arabidopsis genome enables definitive characterization of multigene families and analysis of their phylogenetic relationships. Using a consensus sequence previously defined for glycosyltransferases that use small-molecular-weight acceptors, 107 gene sequences were identified in the Arabidopsis genome and used to construct a phylogenetic tree. Screening recombinant proteins for their catalytic activities in vitro has revealed enzymes active toward physiologically important substrates, including hormones and secondary metabolites. The aim of this study has been to use the phylogenetic relationships across the entire family to explore the evolution of substrate recognition and regioselectivity of glucosylation. Hydroxycoumarins have been used as the model substrates for the analysis in which 90 sequences have been assayed and 48 sequences shown to recognize these compounds. The study has revealed activity in 6 of the 14 phylogenetic groups of the multigene family, suggesting that basic features of substrate recognition are retained across substantial evolutionary periods.