Circadian clock factors regulate the first condensation reaction of fatty acid synthesis in Arabidopsis

Sang Chul Kim, Kristen N. Edgeworth, Dmitri A. Nusinow, Xuemin Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


The circadian clock regulates temporal metabolic activities, but how it affects lipid metabolism is poorly understood. Here, we show that the central clock regulators LATE ELONGATED HYPOCOTYL (LHY) and CIRCADIAN CLOCK ASSOCIATED 1 (CCA1) regulate the initial step of fatty acid (FA) biosynthesis in Arabidopsis. Triacylglycerol (TAG) accumulation in seeds was increased in LHY-overexpressing (LHY-OE) and decreased in lhycca1 plants. Metabolic tracking of lipids in developing seeds indicated that LHY enhanced FA synthesis. Transcript analysis revealed that the expression of genes involved in FA synthesis, including the one encoding β-ketoacyl-ACP synthase III (KASIII), was oppositely changed in developing seeds of LHY/CCA1-OEs and lhycca1. Chromatin immunoprecipitation, electrophoretic mobility shift, and transactivation assays indicated that LHY bound and activated the promoter of KASIII. Furthermore, phosphatidic acid, a metabolic precursor to TAG, inhibited LHY binding to KASIII promoter elements. Our data show a regulatory mechanism for plant lipid biosynthesis by the molecular clock.

Original languageEnglish
Article number113483
JournalCell Reports
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 26 2023


  • Arabidopsis
  • b-ketoacyl-ACP synthase III (KASIII)
  • circadian clock
  • Clock regulation of lipid metabolism
  • CP: Plants
  • fatty acid synthesis
  • LHY/CCA1
  • lipid signaling
  • Lipid-clock interconnection
  • phosphatidic acid
  • seed oil
  • transcriptional regulation


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