Starch as a major integrator in the regulation of plant growth

R. Sulpice, E.T. Pyl, H. Ishihara, S. Trenkamp, M. Steinfath, H. Witucka-Wall, J.J.B. Keurentjes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

377 Citations (Scopus)


Rising demand for food and bioenergy makes it imperative to breed for increased crop yield. Vegetative plant growth could be driven by resource acquisition or developmental programs. Metabolite profiling in 94 Arabidopsis accessions revealed that biomass correlates negatively with many metabolites, especially starch. Starch accumulates in the light and is degraded at night to provide a sustained supply of carbon for growth. Multivariate analysis revealed that starch is an integrator of the overall metabolic response. We hypothesized that this reflects variation in a regulatory network that balances growth with the carbon supply. Transcript profiling in 21 accessions revealed coordinated changes of transcripts of more than 70 carbon-regulated genes and identified 2 genes (myo-inositol-1-phosphate synthase, a Kelch-domain protein) whose transcripts correlate with biomass. The impact of allelic variation at these 2 loci was shown by association mapping, identifying them as candidate lead genes with the potential to increase biomass production
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)10348-10353
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number25
Publication statusPublished - 2009


  • adp-glucose pyrophosphorylase
  • arabidopsis-thaliana
  • trehalose 6-phosphate
  • carbohydrate utilization
  • enzyme-activities
  • redox activation
  • gene-expression
  • carbon
  • networks
  • photosynthesis


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