Comparison of genome-wide gene expression patterns in the seedlings of nascent allohexaploid wheats produced by two combinations of hybrids uri icon

abstract

  • Allopolyploidization in plants is an important event that enhances heterosis and environmental adaptation. Common wheat, Triticum aestivum (AABBDD), which is an allohexaploid that evolved from an allopolyploidization event between T. turgidum (AABB) and Aegilops tauschii (DD), shows more growth vigor and wider adaptation than tetraploid wheats. To better understand the molecular basis for the heterosis of hexaploid wheat, we systematically analyzed the genome-wide gene expression patterns of two combinations of newly hybridized triploids (ABD), their chromosome-doubled hexaploids (AABBDD), stable synthetic hexaploids (AABBDD) and natural hexaploids, in addition to their parents, T. turgidum (AABB) and Ae. tauschii (DD), using a microarray to reconstruct the events of allopolyploidization and genome stabilization. Overall comparisons of gene expression profiles showed that the newly generated hexaploids exhibited gene expression patterns similar to those of their maternal tetraploids, irrespective of hybrid combination. With successive generations, the gene expression profiles of nascent hexaploids became less similar to the maternal profiles, and belonged to a separate cluster from the natural hexaploids. Triploids revealed characteristic expression patterns, suggesting endosperm effects. In the newly hybridized triploids (ABD) of two independent synthetic lines, approximately one-fifth of expressed genes displayed non-additive expression; the number of these genes decreased with polyploidization and genome stabilization. Approximately 20% of the non-additively expressed genes were transmitted across generations throughout allopolyploidization and successive self-pollinations, and 43 genes overlapped between the two combinations, indicating that shared gene expression patterns can be seen during allohexaploidization. Furthermore, four of these 43 genes were involved in starch and sucrose metabolism, suggesting that these metabolic events play key roles in the hybrid vigor of hexaploid wheat.

publication date

  • 2015
  • 2015