AtABCA9 transporter supplies fatty acids for lipid synthesis to the endoplasmic reticulum

Sangwoo Kim, Yasuyo Yamaoka, Hirofumi Ono, Hanul Kim, Donghwan Shim, Masayoshi Maeshima, Enrico Martinoia, Edgar B. Cahoon, Ikuo Nishid, Youngsook Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

95 Scopus citations


Fatty acids, the building blocks of biological lipids, are synthesized in plastids and then transported to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) for assimilation into specific lipid classes. The mechanism of fatty acid transport from plastids to the ER has not been identified. Here we report that AtABCA9, an ABC transporter in Arabidopsis thaliana, mediates this transport. AtABCA9 was localized to the ER, and atabca9 null mutations reduced seed triacylglycerol (TAG) content by 35% compared with WT. Developing atabca9 seeds incorporated 35% less 14C-oleoyl-CoA into TAG compared with WT seeds. Furthermore, overexpression of AtABCA9 enhanced TAG deposition by up to 40%. These data strongly support a role for AtABCA9 as a supplier of fatty acid substrates for TAG biosynthesis at the ER during the seed-filling stage. AtABCA9 may be a powerful tool for increasing lipid production in oilseeds.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)773-778
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 8 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • ABCA transporter
  • ABCA9
  • Acyl-CoA
  • Fatty acid transporter

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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