Herbaceous peony (Paeonia lactiflora Pall.) is a traditional famous flower in China. Flower color is an
important trait, which is associated directly with the ornamental and commercial development values.
However, although there are rich resources in herbaceous peony cultivars with diverse colors such as pink,
red, purple, there is only one yellow cultivar. Breeding peony cultivars with novel colors has vital significance
and market prospects. Chalcone isomerase (CHI), a key enzyme converting yellow chalcone to colorless
naringenin, plays an important regulatory role in flowers color formation. In this study, we not only revealed
the expression pattern of CHI gene in inner and outer petals of herbaceous peony, but also obtained the upstream promoter region of CHI. Additional, the key regulatory regions and candidate transcription factor
binding sites of CHI promoter were clarified. Thereby, this study would provide theoretical basis for a
further study of CHI gene function, meanwhile provide a certain strategy for the study on other flower color.
See pages 122–129 by WU et al. in details. Photos showed here were different herbaceous peony cultivars
provided by Prof. Tao Jun from the College of Horticulture and Plant Protection, Yangzhou University, China.