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Scientific Name:
Crocus sativus
Family Name:
Iridaceae
Common Name:
saffron
Evidence of Activity
Genetics
Correction to: Crocus transcription factors CstMYB1 and CstMYB1R2 modulate apocarotenoid metabolism by regulating carotenogenic genes. [No abstract] Bhat 2021
Four genes (CstMYB1, CstMYB14, CstMYB16, and CstMYB1R2) were found to be correlated with crocin accumulation in Crocus sativus (saffron) with two nuclear localized MYB genes (CstMYB1 and CstMYB1R2) regulating carotenoid metabolism. Bhat 2021
Analysis of genetic diversity among several Crocus sativus (saffron) populations found minimal differentiation between the different accessions. Mir 2021
A transcriptomic study identified genes involved in flowering transition in saffron (Crocus sativus), and were significantly enriched in the sugar metabolism, hormone signal transduction, cell cycle regulatory, photoperiod, and autonomous pathways. Hu 2020
A high-quality full-length transcriptome of the sterile triploid Crocus sativus, using PacBio SMRT sequencing technology, is presented. Based on gene expression profiling, CCD2 is found to be expressed at an extremely high level in the stigma. Yue 2020
While DNA is the same in all parts of the Crocus sativus plant, epigenetic state can vary according to organ and/or tissue of origin. Therefore, the possible use of epigenetics to monitor alduderation of saffron stigmas with other parts of the saffron flower is reported. Busconi 2020
A study characterizing tissue expressions of phytoene synthases responsible for accumulation of crocins in Crocus sativus showed expression patterns of each gene (CsPSY1a, CsPSY1b, CsPSY2, CsPSY3), as well as showed specialization in different tissues during development of the stigma. Ahrazem 2019
Crocus sativus was found to be an autotriploid that evolved in Attica by combining two genotypes of C. cartwrightianus, with triploid sterility and vegetative propagation later preventing segregation of the favorable traits of saffron, resulting in worldwide cultivation of a unique clonal lineage. Nemati 2019
Gene expression profiles of stigmas at two key developmental stages for apocarotenoid accumulation in three different Crocus species were generated, allowing identification of transcription factors that provide evidence of environmental and developmental control at the molecular level. Ahrazem 2019
Two novel genes associated with flowering were identified following analysis of full-length transcriptomes of flowering and non-flowering Crocus sativus plants. Tissue distribution showed specifically high expression in flower organs with increased accumulation during flower development. Qian 2019
A landmark discovery determined saffron, whose autotriploid nature has been baffling scientists for years, to be an autotriploid hybrid derived from heterogeneous Crocus cartwrightianus cytotypes. Schmidt 2019
A quantitative PCR-based method was developed for the identification of Crocus sativus and Carthamus tinctorius sources. [Article in Chinese] Zhang 2018
DNA fingerprints of Crocus sativus genotypes grown in Saudi Arabia were established. Sharaf-Eldin 2018
An in vitro ethyl methanesulfonate mutagenesis protocol for putative genetic improvement of saffron (Crocus sativus) was developed. Kashtwari 2018
Expression profiles of 12 genes associated with carotenoid/apocarotenoid biosynthesis in saffron were studied during 8 stages of corm development with results indicating phytohormones and sugars interaction, mother corm reserves, and internal and external factors may contribute to corm/bud growth. Sharma 2018
Subcellular Spice Trade Routes: Crocin Biosynthesis in the Saffron Crocus (Crocus sativus). [No abstract] Yeats 2018
A genetic study of Crocus spp. concluded that C. sativus might have originated from C. cartwrightianus via autotriploidy. Nemati 2018
High epigenetic variability was observed among saffron (Crocus sativus) accessions of different geographic origins cultivated in the same field, with the epigenetic profiles being stable for up to four years of cultivation. Busconi 2018
Enzymes involved in crocin biosynthesis in the stigmas of Crocus sativus were characterized and shown to localize to different cellular compartments, with synthesis beginning in the plastids and then transferring to the endoplasmic reticulum and cytoplasm. Demurtas 2018
Four enzymes catalyzing the conversion of crocetin dialdehyde to crocetin were identified in Crocus sativus; two were shown to be stigma tissue-specific. Gómez-Gómez 2018
Characterization of promoters regulating the expression of two genes involved in production of apocarotenoids in Crocus sativus was perfomed. In silico analysis demonstrated the presence of cis regulatory elements responding to light, hormones, and interaction with transcription factors. Bhat 2018
A DNA-based method for the authentication of Greek saffron with Protected Designation of Origin was developed. Bosmali 2017
A DNA-based real-time PCR method for detection of safflower (Carthamus tinctorius) adulteration of saffron (Crocus sativus) was developed, allowing detection of as little as 0.1% of safflower in saffron. Villa 2017
Recent research progress made in the area of functional genomics of saffron is reviewed, highlighting the potential of several genes and transcription factors in the carotenoid/apocarotenoid pathway. Dhar 2017
Zinc-finger transcription factor CsSAP09 was found to be potentially associated with the biosynthesis of apocarotenoids in Crocus sativus, in a transcriptome-wide study. Malik 2017
The structure, function, and their relationship, of a β-glucosidase (CsBGlu12) from Crocus sativus were elucidated. Baba 2017
The transport of crocin from chromoplasts to the vacuole in the saffron stigmae cells was unraveled, and new candidates of genes involved in crocetin metabolism were identified. Gómez-Gómez 2017
Discovery of two microRNAs (miR414 and miR837-5p) in C. sativus stigma lead to the identification of several genes putatively involved in apocarotenoid biosynthesis. Zinati 2016
The influence of light on gene expression in saffron stigmas was elucidated. Ahrazem 2016
A method of differentiation of saffron from its adulterants, using a novel, loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) technique, is proposed. Zhao 2016
Three carotenoid cleavage dioxygenase 2 (CsCCD2) genes, as well as their regulatory elements (responsible for light, temperature, and circadian regulation) were identified and characterized in C. sativus. Ahrazem 2016
Novel DNA markers were developed for the detection of adulteration of saffron (C. sativus) by other plant species material. Furthermore, genetic and epigenetic data were successfully utilized in determining adulteration by other saffron flower parts (styles, stamens and tepals). Soffritti 2016
Insights were gained into the biosynthesis of apocarotenoids (crocins) in saffron (C. sativus), using de novo transcriptome assembly and comprehensive expression profiling. Jain 2016
The proteome of saffron (C. sativus) from different geographical locations was characterized, showing a distinct protein pattern, which could potentially be utilized in control of saffron adulteration. Paredi 2016
Carotenoid cleavage dioxygenase CCD2, responsible for the synthesis of crocetin in Crocus spp., was found to be localized in the plastids. Ahrazem 2016
A method was developed for the detection of Calendula officinalis DNA in saffron down to 0.01%. Schmiderer 2015
A novel method of analysis of plant genome methylation was applied to the characterization of Crocus sativus hypomethylome. Wischnitzki 2015
Comprehensive transcriptome analysis of Crocus sativus stigma and rest of the flower tissue was performed. Baba 2015
No genetic polymorphisms were identified in Crocus sativus accessions from Spain, Iran, and Kashmir, suggesting that the triploid hybrid species has arisen only once, with the most likely ancestors being C. cartwrightianus and C. pallasii subsp. pallasii (or close relatives). Alsayied 2015
Analysis of 112 accessions from the World Saffron and Crocus Collection showed high levels of epigenetic variability (33.57% polymorphic peaks and 28 different effective epigenotypes), and low, of genetic, with distribution of the accessions reflecting the geographical origin. Busconi 2015
A transcription factor called CsULT1 was identified, which appears to be involved in the regulation of apocarotenoid (crocin) biosynthesis in Crocus sativus. Ashraf 2015
A DNA-based method was developed for fast and cost-effective detection of adulterants (Carthamus tinctorius, Calendula officinalis flowers; Hemerocallis petals; Daucus carota root; Curcuma longa rhizomes; Zea mays, Nelumbo nucifera stigmas) in saffron. Jiang 2014
New candidate enzymes involved in the production of carotenoids in saffron stigmas were identified. Rubio-Moraga 2014
A novel enzyme, expressed early during stigma development in Crocus sativus, was identified as catalyzing the first dedicated step in saffron crocin biosynthesis. Frusciante 2014
Phylogeny of the Crocus genus was elucidated using one chloroplast and two nuclear genetic loci. Characteristics of seed surface structures were also studied, using scanning electron microscopy. Harpke 2013
A DNA-based method for the detection of common bulking agents (e.g., Calendula officinalis, Carthamus tinctorius, Crocus vernus, etc.) in commercial saffron (Crocus sativus) was developed. Marieschi 2012
Development of a set of polymorphic microsatellite markers in saffron (Crocus sativus) is reported. Nemati 2012
A glucosyltransferase enzyme, UGT707B1, involved in the formation of kaempferol and quercetin sophorosides in Crocus sativus, was characterized. Trapero 2012
Phylogeny of the Asparagales, which include several important crop species in the genera such as Allium, Aloe, Asparagus, Crocus, and Vanilla, was reviewed based on the analysis of three plastid and two mitochondrial genes. Seberg 2012
A gene, named CsatCEN/TFL1-like, involved in the regulation of flowering time in Crocus sativus was isolated and characterized. Tsaftaris 2012
A MYB transcription factor from saffron (Crocus sativus) was characterized. Gómez-Gómez 2012
Proteome changes in Crocus sativus calluses during somatic embryogenesis were elucidated. Sharifi 2012
Senescence of unpollinated Crocus sativus stigmas was associated with increased expression of 9-cis-epoxycarotenoid dioxygenase, involved in the regulation of abscisic synthesis; while in corms the gene expression was associated with dormancy. Ahrazem 2012
The role of E-class SEPALLATA3 (SEP3) subfamily genes in the flowering and flower organ formation of cultivated saffron crocus (Crocus sativus) was elucidated. Tsaftaris 2011
A protein from fresh stigmas of Crocus sativus, putatively involved in the active defense of the plant against pathogens, was cloned. Gómez-Gómez 2011
Genes potentially involved in the regulation of pollen-pistil interaction pathways were identified in Crocus sativus. Allen 2010
The present study reports on the genomic structures of two lycopene-beta-cyclase genes, CstLcyB1 and CstLcyB2a, and on their transcription patterns in different Crocus sativus tissues. Ahrazem 2010
The isolation of four promoter regions from Crocus sativus, a crop cultivated for saffron production was presented. Tsaftaris 2010
A study carried out to determine whether phenotypical differences found in Saffron (Crocus sativus) was supported by molecular analyses and the study suggested that C. sativus is a monomorphic species & genome sequencing is needed to find molecular markers for saffron. Rubio-Moraga 2009
It is suggested that CsGT45, is an active enzyme that plays a role in the formation of flavonoid glucosides in Crocus sativus stigmas. Moraga 2009
The cloning, expression & purification of saffron profilin from pollen was described. The 34kDa- recombinant saffron profilin, Cro s 2, as a fusion protein was purified. Immunoblotting tested with sera of allergic patients showed a specific reaction with the recombinant Cro s 2 band. Varasteh 2009
The first in-depth coverage of a large taxonomic group, all 86 known species (except two doubtful ones) of crocus was presented. Even six average-sized barcode regions do not identify all crocus species which is currently an unrealistic burden in a barcode context. Seberg 2009
The interaction of safranal with calf thymus DNA (ctDNA), oligo(GC)15, and oligo(AT)15 in comparison with picrocrocin was investigated and the mechanism for B- to H-DNA transition, due to the interaction of safranal with GC-rich sequences was presented. Hoshyar 2008
Four carotenoid cleavage dioxygenase (CCD) genes, CsCCD1a, CsCCD1b, CsCCD4a, and CsCCD4b, were isolated from Crocus sativus & suggested that all four C. sativus CCD enzymes may contribute in different ways to production of beta-ionone, the principal norisoprenoid volatile in the stigma. Rubio 2008
Plant profilins form a well-known panallergen family responsible for cross-sensitization between plant foods and pollens and sought to map T and B-cell epitopes on the Iranian Crocus sativus profilin by bioinformatics tools. Saffari 2008
The Saffron Genes database represents the first reference collection for the genomics of Iridaceae, for the molecular biology of stigma biogenesis, as well as for the metabolic pathways underlying saffron secondary metabolism. D'Agostino 2007
It is shown that saffron and its carotenoids -crocin, crocetin, and dimethylcrocetin (DMC)- interact with DNA and induce some conformational changes. Of these carotenoids, the order of potential of interaction with DNA is crocetin > DMC >> crocin. Bathaie 2007
The patterns of the rDNA ITS sequence variation of Crocus sativus, Chrysanthemum chanetii, Nelumbo nucifera, Zea mays and Garthamus tinctorius was found and the molecular biological method for identification of C. sativus and the others was established. [Article in Chinese] Che 2007
The study examined the interaction of transfer RNA with safranal, crocetin, and dimethylcrocetin in aqueous solution at physiological conditions. Kanakis 2007
Analysis of Pistillata/Globosa(PI/GLO) sequences from Crocus sativus for putative targets to known micro-RNAs (miRNAs) showed that target site for ath-miRNA167 found in Arabidopsis thaliana PI is not present in C. sativus, but PI/GLO sequences may be regulated by an ath-miRNA163. Kalivas 2007
The effect of saffron carotenoids on H1 structure and H1-DNA interaction as a possible mechanism of their anticarcinogenic action was investigated. Ashrafi 2005
The accumulation and the molecular mechanisms that regulate the synthesis of the apocarotenoids during stigma development in Crocus sativus were investigated. The cDNAs for phytoene synthase, lycopene-beta-cyclase, and beta-ring hydroxylase from C. sativus were cloned. Castillo 2005
The final step in the biosynthesis of the 20-carbon esterified carotenoid crocin is the transformation of the insoluble crocetin into a soluble and stable storage form by glucosylation & catalysed by glucosyltransferases that play a crucial role in natural-product biosynthesis. Moraga 2004
The Crocus zeaxanthin 7,8(7',8')-cleavage dioxygenase gene (CsZCD), which codes for a chromoplast enzyme that initiates the biogenesis of these derivatives has been identified and functionally characterized. Bouvier 2003
[Textual research on the origin and development of crocus sativus L., a Chinese medicinal herb] (Chi). [Article in Chinese] Gao 1984
Chromosome Counts for 88 species in the Genus Crocus (Iridaceae) covering the range from W.Europe (Portugal) and N.Africa (Morocco) east to Russian Tadzhikustan have been enumerated. Brighton 1973
History of Record
ORIGINAL RESEARCH BY: Rasheed Rabata
April 2019
LATEST UPDATES BY: Julie Dennis
November 2021