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Article|01 Apr 2021|OPEN
The transcription factor SlHY5 regulates the ripening of tomato fruit at both the transcriptional and translational levels
Weihao Wang1, Peiwen Wang1,2, Xiaojing Li1,2, Yuying Wang1, Shiping Tian1,2 & Guozheng Qin1,2
1Key Laboratory of Plant Resources, Institute of Botany, the Innovative Academy of Seed Design, Chinese Academy of Sciences, No. 20 Nanxincun, Xiangshan, Haidian District, 100093 Beijing, China
2University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, 100049 Beijing, China

Horticulture Research 8,
Article number: 83 (2021)
doi: 10.1038/hortres.2021.83
Views: 249

Received: 08 Oct 2020
Revised: 02 Feb 2021
Accepted: 06 Feb 2021
Published online: 01 Apr 2021


Light plays a critical role in plant growth and development, but the mechanisms through which light regulates fruit ripening and nutritional quality in horticultural crops remain largely unknown. Here, we found that ELONGATED HYPOCOTYL 5 (HY5), a master regulator in the light signaling pathway, is required for normal fruit ripening in tomato (Solanum lycopersicum). Loss of function of tomato HY5 (SlHY5) impairs pigment accumulation and ethylene biosynthesis. Transcriptome profiling identified 2948 differentially expressed genes, which included 1424 downregulated and 1524 upregulated genes, in the Slhy5 mutants. In addition, genes involved in carotenoid and anthocyanin biosynthesis and ethylene signaling were revealed as direct targets of SlHY5 by chromatin immunoprecipitation. Surprisingly, the expression of a large proportion of genes encoding ribosomal proteins was downregulated in the Slhy5 mutants, and this downregulation pattern was accompanied by a decrease in the abundance of ribosomal proteins. Further analysis demonstrated that SlHY5 affected the translation efficiency of numerous ripening-related genes. These data indicate that SlHY5 regulates fruit ripening both at the transcriptional level by targeting specific molecular pathways and at the translational level by affecting the protein translation machinery. Our findings unravel the regulatory mechanisms of SlHY5 in controlling fruit ripening and nutritional quality and uncover the multifaceted regulation of gene expression by transcription factors.