Dataset Information


Widespread and adaptive alterations in genome-wide gene expression associated with ecological divergence of two Oryza species

ABSTRACT: Ecological speciation is a common mechanism by which new species arise. Despite great efforts, the role of gene expression in ecological divergence and speciation is poorly understood. Here, we conducted a genome-wide gene expression investigation of two Oryza species that are evolutionarily young and distinct in ecology and morphology. Using digital gene expression (DGE) technology and the paired-end RNA sequencing (RNA-Seq) method, we obtained 21,415 expressed genes across three reproduction-related tissues at two critical developmental stages. Of them, ~8% (1717) differed significantly in expression levels between the two species and these differentially expressed genes are randomly distributed across the genome. Moreover, 62% (1064) of the differentially expressed genes exhibited a signature of directional selection in at least one species. Importantly, the genes with differential expression between species evolved more rapidly at the 5’flanking sequences than the genes without differential expression relative to coding sequences, suggesting that cis-regulatory changes are likely adaptive and play an important role in the ecological divergence of the two species. Finally, we showed evidence of significant differentiation between species in phenotype traits and observed that genes with differential expression were overrepresented with functional terms involving phenotypic and ecological differentiation between the two species, including reproduction- and stress-related characteristics. Our findings demonstrate that ecological speciation is associated with widespread and adaptive alterations in genome-wide gene expression and highlight the dominant role of regulatory evolution in ecological divergence and adaptation. We selected accessions representing typical Oryza rufipogon and O. nivara, which were sampled exclusively from South and Southeast Asia where the two species overlap. We chose to collect three types of tissues, i.e., flag leaves at the heading stage (2–7 cm above the primary branch) (L), panicles at the heading stage (H) and panicles at the flowering stage (10–15 cm above the primary branch) (F). Sample collection was repeated twice in two consecutive years (2009 and 2010) under the same controlled conditions. A total of 36 samples were sequenced by Illumina’s digital gene expression (DGE) system, with each type of tissues collected from six individuals of each species as biological replicates. To access the quality of DGE technology, we also selected six samples representing three tissues from each of two individuals (one individual per species) for paired-end RNA-Seq sequencing.

SUBMITTER: Fu-Min Zhang   Lian Zhou  Lei Huang  Xing-Hua Wei  Zhe Cai  Song Ge  Ping-Li Liu  Rong Liu  Xiao-Ming Zheng  Yu-Su Du  Jie Guo 

PROVIDER: E-GEOD-71044 | ArrayExpress | 2016-07-17



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