Seeds are storage organ in plants and main resource of plant oils to human civilization and the demand of plant oils are increasing yearly and expansion of the production capacity is an urgent issue worldwide. Thus, it is necessary to improve oil yields per unit area and generation of crops with high-oil content is needed. Arabidopsis thaliana plays a vital role in advancement of genetics and molecular biology in plant sciences. The forward and reverse genetic approaches with Arabidopsis have provided an overview of triacylglycerol metabolism. The elucidation of the overview contributes to understanding of spatiotemporal regulation of a metabolic flow of triacylglycerol metabolism in plant cell. This understanding sheds light on bottlenecks in triacylglycerol biosynthesis and provides novel clues for increasing seed triacylglycerol content. Recent advance in metabolic engineering approaches demonstrate several evidences that triacylglycerol metabolism is coordinated with other metabolisms. Most notably, triacylglycerol biosynthesis competes with biosynthesis of starch or seed storage proteins. These studies indicate that alterations of the metabolic pathways to avoid the competitions could be a novel concept for increasing seed oil content.
Part of the book: New Challenges in Seed Biology