Mapping the d1 and d2 dwarfing genes and the purple foliage color locus P in pearl millet.
The d(1) and d(2) dwarfing genes and the P purple foliage color gene were placed on the restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP)-based molecular marker linkage map of pearl millet [Pennisetum glaucum (L.) R. Br.] using a mapping population based on a cross of inbred lines IP 18293 (D(1)/D(1), d(2)/d(2), P/P) and Tift 238D1 (d(1)/d(1) D(2)/D(2) p/p). A skeleton genetic linkage map of 562 cM (Haldane function) was constructed using 33 RFLP markers and these three morphological markers. The D(1)/d(1) plant height locus mapped to pearl millet linkage group 1, while the D(2)/d(2) plant height locus and the P/p foliage color locus mapped to pearl millet linkage group 4. Loose genetic linkage was observed between the D(2)/d(2) and P/p loci, with 42% repulsion-phase recombination corresponding to 92 cM (Haldane). This loose linkage of morphological marker loci detected on pearl millet LG4 can likely find use in applied pearl millet breeding programs, as host plant resistances to both downy mildew and rust have previously been identified in this genomic region. Such exploitation of these morphological markers in an applied disease resistance breeding program would require development of appropriate genetic stocks, but the relatively loose genetic linkage between d(2) and P suggests that this should not be difficult. (+info)
High-resolution physical mapping in Pennisetum squamulatum reveals extensive chromosomal heteromorphism of the genomic region associated with apomixis.
Gametophytic apomixis is asexual reproduction as a consequence of parthenogenetic development of a chromosomally unreduced egg. The trait leads to the production of embryos with a maternal genotype, i.e. progeny are clones of the maternal plant. The application of the trait in agriculture could be a tremendous tool for crop improvement through conventional and nonconventional breeding methods. Unfortunately, there are no major crops that reproduce by apomixis, and interspecific hybridization with wild relatives has not yet resulted in commercially viable germplasm. Pennisetum squamulatum is an aposporous apomict from which the gene(s) for apomixis has been transferred to sexual pearl millet by backcrossing. Twelve molecular markers that are linked with apomixis coexist in a tight linkage block called the apospory-specific genomic region (ASGR), and several of these markers have been shown to be hemizygous in the polyploid genome of P. squamulatum. High resolution genetic mapping of these markers has not been possible because of low recombination in this region of the genome. We now show the physical arrangement of bacterial artificial chromosomes containing apomixis-linked molecular markers by high resolution fluorescence in situ hybridization on pachytene chromosomes. The size of the ASGR, currently defined as the entire hemizygous region that hybridizes with apomixis-linked bacterial artificial chromosomes, was estimated on pachytene and mitotic chromosomes to be approximately 50 Mbp (a quarter of the chromosome). The ASGR includes highly repetitive sequences from an Opie-2-like retrotransposon family that are particularly abundant in this region of the genome. (+info)
Uniparental chromosome elimination at mitosis and interphase in wheat and pearl millet crosses involves micronucleus formation, progressive heterochromatinization, and DNA fragmentation.
Complete uniparental chromosome elimination occurs in several interspecific hybrids of plants. We studied the mechanisms underlying selective elimination of the paternal chromosomes during the development of wheat (Triticum aestivum) x pearl millet (Pennisetum glaucum) hybrid embryos. All pearl millet chromosomes were eliminated in a random sequence between 6 and 23 d after pollination. Parental genomes were spatially separated within the hybrid nucleus, and pearl millet chromatin destined for elimination occupied peripheral interphase positions. Structural reorganization of the paternal chromosomes occurred, and mitotic behavior differed between the parental chromosomes. We provide evidence for a novel chromosome elimination pathway that involves the formation of nuclear extrusions during interphase in addition to postmitotically formed micronuclei. The chromatin structure of nuclei and micronuclei is different, and heterochromatinization and DNA fragmentation of micronucleated pearl millet chromatin is the final step during haploidization. (+info)
A segment of the apospory-specific genomic region is highly microsyntenic not only between the apomicts Pennisetum squamulatum and buffelgrass, but also with a rice chromosome 11 centromeric-proximal genomic region.
Bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) clones from apomicts Pennisetum squamulatum and buffelgrass (Cenchrus ciliaris), isolated with the apospory-specific genomic region (ASGR) marker ugt197, were assembled into contigs that were extended by chromosome walking. Gene-like sequences from contigs were identified by shotgun sequencing and BLAST searches, and used to isolate orthologous rice contigs. Additional gene-like sequences in the apomicts' contigs were identified by bioinformatics using fully sequenced BACs from orthologous rice contigs as templates, as well as by interspecies, whole-contig cross-hybridizations. Hierarchical contig orthology was rapidly assessed by constructing detailed long-range contig molecular maps showing the distribution of gene-like sequences and markers, and searching for microsyntenic patterns of sequence identity and spatial distribution within and across species contigs. We found microsynteny between P. squamulatum and buffelgrass contigs. Importantly, this approach also enabled us to isolate from within the rice (Oryza sativa) genome contig Rice A, which shows the highest microsynteny and is most orthologous to the ugt197-containing C1C buffelgrass contig. Contig Rice A belongs to the rice genome database contig 77 (according to the current September 12, 2003, rice fingerprint contig build) that maps proximal to the chromosome 11 centromere, a feature that interestingly correlates with the mapping of ASGR-linked BACs proximal to the centromere or centromere-like sequences. Thus, relatedness between these two orthologous contigs is supported both by their molecular microstructure and by their centromeric-proximal location. Our discoveries promote the use of a microsynteny-based positional-cloning approach using the rice genome as a template to aid in constructing the ASGR toward the isolation of genes underlying apospory. (+info)
Comparative physical mapping of the apospory-specific genomic region in two apomictic grasses: Pennisetum squamulatum and Cenchrus ciliaris.
In gametophytic apomicts of the aposporous type, each cell of the embryo sac is genetically identical to somatic cells of the ovule because they are products of mitosis, not of meiosis. The egg of the aposporous embryo sac follows parthenogenetic development into an embryo; therefore, uniform progeny result even from heterozygous plants, a trait that would be valuable for many crop species. Attempts to introgress apomixis from wild relatives into major crops through traditional breeding have been hindered by low or no recombination within the chromosomal region governing this trait (the apospory-specific genomic region or ASGR). The lack of recombination also has been a major obstacle to positional cloning of key genes. To further delineate and characterize the nonrecombinant ASGR, we have identified eight new ASGR-linked, AFLP-based molecular markers, only one of which showed recombination with the trait for aposporous embryo sac development. Bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) clones identified with the ASGR-linked AFLPs or previously mapped markers, when mapped by fluorescence in situ hybridization in Pennisetum squamulatum and Cenchrus ciliaris, showed almost complete macrosynteny between the two apomictic grasses throughout the ASGR, although with an inverted order. A BAC identified with the recombinant AFLP marker mapped most proximal to the centromere of the ASGR-carrier chromosome in P. squamulatum but was not located on the ASGR-carrier chromosome in C. ciliaris. Exceptional regions where synteny was disrupted probably are nonessential for expression of the aposporous trait. The ASGR appears to be maintained as a haplotype even though its position in the genome can be variable. (+info)
Pennisetum squamulatum: is the predominant cytotype hexaploid or octaploid?
Apomixis is a mode of asexual reproduction where maternal clones are produced through seeds. Consequently, genetic segregation is prevented in hybrid progenies. Pennisetum squamulatum has been used to transfer apomixis into the related sexual species Pennisetum glaucum by the introgression of an apospory-specific genomic region (ASGR)-carrier chromosome. Crosses between P. glaucum and P. squamulatum or Pennisetum purpureum have been relatively easy to make even though P. squamulatum has been reported to have a different basic chromosome number than the other 2 species (9 vs. 7) and to be hexaploid (2n = 6x = 54). Our extensive examination of one accession had shown a chromosome number of 2n = 56. In order to determine if there was a variation among accessions, we counted the number of chromosomes in 5 accessions of P. squamulatum using centromeric and 18S-5.8S-26S rDNA probes as molecular cytological markers. Our results showed that P. squamulatum is most likely octaploid with a basic chromosome number of 7 (2n = 8x = 56) and may belong to the secondary gene pool of Pennisetum. Moreover, a morphologically similar ASGR-carrier chromosome that confers apomixis was observed in all accessions. (+info)
Nonhost resistance of barley is successfully manifested against Magnaporthe grisea and a closely related Pennisetum-infecting lineage but is overcome by Magnaporthe oryzae.
Magnaporthe oryzae is a major pathogen of rice (Oryza sativa L.) but is also able to infect other grasses, including barley (Hordeum vulgare L.). Here, we report a study using Magnaporthe isolates collected from other host plant species to evaluate their capacity to infect barley. A nonhost type of resistance was detected in barley against isolates derived from genera Pennisetum (fontaingrass) or Digitaria (crabgrass), but no resistance occurred in response to isolates from rice, genus Eleusine (goosegrass), wheat (Triticum aestivum L.), or maize (Zea mays L.), respectively. Restriction of pathogen growth in the nonhost interaction was investigated microscopically and compared with compatible interactions. Real-time polymerase chain reaction was used to quantify fungal biomass in both types of interaction. The phylogenetic relationship among the Magnaporthe isolates used in this study was investigated by inferring gene trees for fragments of three genes, actin, calmodulin, and beta-tubulin. Based on phylogenetic analysis, we could distinguish different species that were strictly correlated with the ability of the isolates to infect barley. We demonstrated that investigating specific host interaction phenotypes for a range of pathogen isolates can accurately highlight genetic diversity within a pathogen population. (+info)
Functional validation of a novel isoform of Na+/H+ antiporter from Pennisetum glaucum for enhancing salinity tolerance in rice.
Salt stress is an environmental factor that severely impairs plant growth and productivity. We have cloned a novel isoform of a vacuolar Na+/H+ antiporter from Pennisetum glaucum (PgNHX1) that contains 5 transmembrane domains in contrast to AtNHX1 and OsNHX1 which have 9 transmembrane domains. Recently we have shown that PgNHX1 could confer high level of salinity tolerance when overexpressed in Brassica juncea. Here,we report the functional validation of this antiporter in crop plant rice. Overexpression of PgNHX1 conferred high level of salinity tolerance in rice. Transgenic rice plants overexpressing PgNHX1 developed more extensive root system and completed their life cycle by setting flowers and seeds in the presence of 150 mM NaCl. Our data demonstrate the potential of PgNHX1 for imparting enhanced salt tolerance capabilities to salt-sensitive crop plants for growing in high saline areas. (+info)