Targeted disruption of an orthologue of DOMAINS REARRANGED METHYLASE 2, OsDRM2, impairs the growth of rice plants by abnormal DNA methylation

Satoru Moritoh, Chang Ho Eun, Akemi Ono, Hisayo Asao, Yosuke Okano, Katsushi Yamaguchi, Zenpei Shimatani, Amane Koizumi, Rie Terada

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Summary Recent methylome analyses of the entire Arabidopsis thaliana genome using various mutants have provided detailed information about the DNA methylation pattern and its function. However, information about DNA methylation in other plants is limited, partly because of the lack of mutants. To study DNA methylation in rice (Oryza sativa) we applied homologous recombination-mediated gene targeting to generate targeted disruptants of OsDRM2, a rice orthologue of DOMAINS REARRANGED METHYLASE 1 and 2 (DRM1/2), which encode DNA methyltransferases responsible for de novo and non-CG methylation in Arabidopsis. Whereas Arabidopsis drm1 drm2 double mutants showed no morphological alterations, targeted disruptants of rice OsDRM2 displayed pleiotropic developmental phenotypes in both vegetative and reproductive stages, including growth defects, semi-dwarfed stature, reductions in tiller number, delayed heading or no heading, abnormal panicle and spikelet morphology, and complete sterility. In these osdrm2 disruptants, a 13.9% decrease in 5-methylcytosine was observed by HPLC analysis. The CG and non-CG methylation levels were reduced in RIRE7/CRR1 retrotransposons, and in 5S rDNA repeats. Associated transcriptional activation was detected in RIRE7/CRR1. Furthermore, de novo methylation by an RNA-directed DNA methylation (RdDM) process involving transgene-derived exogenous small interfering RNA (siRNA) was deficient in osdrm2-disrupted cells. Impaired growth and abnormal DNA methylation of osdrm2 disruptants were restored by the complementation of wild-type OsDRM2 cDNA. Our results suggest that OsDRM2 is responsible for de novo, CG and non-CG methylation in rice genomic sequences, and that DNA methylation regulated by OsDRM2 is essential for proper rice development in both vegetative and reproductive stages.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)85-98
Number of pages14
JournalPlant Journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2012 Jul
Externally publishedYes


  • development
  • DNA methylation
  • gene targeting (GT)
  • homologous recombination (HR)
  • rice (Oryza sativa)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • Plant Science
  • Cell Biology


Dive into the research topics of 'Targeted disruption of an orthologue of DOMAINS REARRANGED METHYLASE 2, OsDRM2, impairs the growth of rice plants by abnormal DNA methylation'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this