Tissue-specific accumulation profiles of phorbol esters in Jatropha curcas and gene induction in response to abiotic and biotic stresses
Jatropha curcas L. ( J. curcas ), a shrub plant of the Euphorbiaceae family, has received enormous attention as a promising biofuel plant for the production of biodiesel and medical potential in ethnopharmacology. However, the tumor-promoter toxin phorbol esters present in J. curcas raises concerns for health and environmental risk as its large-scale cultivation limits the use of meal obtained after oil extraction for animal feed. Here, we determined the variation of phorbol ester profiles and contents in eight J. curcas tissues by high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and found phorbol esters present in all parts of the plant except the seed shell. We showed tissue-specific patterns of accumulation of phorbol esters and associated terpenoids at the transcriptomic level with high transcript levels in reproductive and young tissues. Genes involved in the same module of terpenoids biosynthesis were positively correlated. We further present diverse abiotic and biotic stresses that had different effects on the accumulation of transcripts in terpenoids shared and branched terpenoid pathways in plant seedlings. The fine-tuning of terpenoids biosynthesis may link with ecological functions in plants under extreme environments and defense against pathogens. ### Competing Interest Statement The authors have declared no competing interest.
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