Development of eSSR-Markers in Setaria italica and Their Applicability in Studying Genetic Diversity, Cross-Transferability and Comparative Mapping in Millet and Non-Millet Species.
ABSTRACT: Foxtail millet (Setariaitalica L.) is a tractable experimental model crop for studying functional genomics of millets and bioenergy grasses. But the limited availability of genomic resources, particularly expressed sequence-based genic markers is significantly impeding its genetic improvement. Considering this, we attempted to develop EST-derived-SSR (eSSR) markers and utilize them in germplasm characterization, cross-genera transferability and in silico comparative mapping. From 66,027 foxtail millet EST sequences 24,828 non-redundant ESTs were deduced, representing ~16 Mb, which revealed 534 (~2%) eSSRs in 495 SSR containing ESTs at a frequency of 1/30 kb. A total of 447 pp were successfully designed, of which 327 were mapped physically onto nine chromosomes. About 106 selected primer pairs representing the foxtail millet genome showed high-level of cross-genera amplification at an average of ~88% in eight millets and four non-millet species. Broad range of genetic diversity (0.02-0.65) obtained in constructed phylogenetic tree using 40 eSSR markers demonstrated its utility in germplasm characterizations and phylogenetics. Comparative mapping of physically mapped eSSR markers showed considerable proportion of sequence-based orthology and syntenic relationship between foxtail millet chromosomes and sorghum (~68%), maize (~61%) and rice (~42%) chromosomes. Synteny analysis of eSSRs of foxtail millet, rice, maize and sorghum suggested the nested chromosome fusion frequently observed in grass genomes. Thus, for the first time we had generated large-scale eSSR markers in foxtail millet and demonstrated their utility in germplasm characterization, transferability, phylogenetics and comparative mapping studies in millets and bioenergy grass species.
Project description:The availability of well-validated informative co-dominant microsatellite markers and saturated genetic linkage map has been limited in foxtail millet (Setaria italica L.). In view of this, we conducted a genome-wide analysis and identified 28 342 microsatellite repeat-motifs spanning 405.3 Mb of foxtail millet genome. The trinucleotide repeats (?48%) was prevalent when compared with dinucleotide repeats (?46%). Of the 28 342 microsatellites, 21 294 (?75%) primer pairs were successfully designed, and a total of 15 573 markers were physically mapped on 9 chromosomes of foxtail millet. About 159 markers were validated successfully in 8 accessions of Setaria sp. with ?67% polymorphic potential. The high percentage (89.3%) of cross-genera transferability across millet and non-millet species with higher transferability percentage in bioenergy grasses (?79%, Switchgrass and ?93%, Pearl millet) signifies their importance in studying the bioenergy grasses. In silico comparative mapping of 15 573 foxtail millet microsatellite markers against the mapping data of sorghum (16.9%), maize (14.5%) and rice (6.4%) indicated syntenic relationships among the chromosomes of foxtail millet and target species. The results, thus, demonstrate the immense applicability of developed microsatellite markers in germplasm characterization, phylogenetics, construction of genetic linkage map for gene/quantitative trait loci discovery, comparative mapping in foxtail millet, including other millets and bioenergy grass species.
Project description:Generating genomic resources in terms of molecular markers is imperative in molecular breeding for crop improvement. Though development and application of microsatellite markers in large-scale was reported in the model crop foxtail millet, no such large-scale study was conducted for intron-length polymorphic (ILP) markers. Considering this, we developed 5123 ILP markers, of which 4049 were physically mapped onto 9 chromosomes of foxtail millet. BLAST analysis of 5123 expressed sequence tags (ESTs) suggested the function for ?71.5% ESTs and grouped them into 5 different functional categories. About 440 selected primer pairs representing the foxtail millet genome and the different functional groups showed high-level of cross-genera amplification at an average of ?85% in eight millets and five non-millet species. The efficacy of the ILP markers for distinguishing the foxtail millet is demonstrated by observed heterozygosity (0.20) and Nei's average gene diversity (0.22). In silico comparative mapping of physically mapped ILP markers demonstrated substantial percentage of sequence-based orthology and syntenic relationship between foxtail millet chromosomes and sorghum (?50%), maize (?46%), rice (?21%) and Brachypodium (?21%) chromosomes. Hence, for the first time, we developed large-scale ILP markers in foxtail millet and demonstrated their utility in germplasm characterization, transferability, phylogenetics and comparative mapping studies in millets and bioenergy grass species.
Project description:MYB proteins represent one of the largest transcription factor families in plants, playing important roles in diverse developmental and stress-responsive processes. Considering its significance, several genome-wide analyses have been conducted in almost all land plants except foxtail millet. Foxtail millet (Setaria italica L.) is a model crop for investigating systems biology of millets and bioenergy grasses. Further, the crop is also known for its potential abiotic stress-tolerance. In this context, a comprehensive genome-wide survey was conducted and 209 MYB protein-encoding genes were identified in foxtail millet. All 209 S. italica MYB (SiMYB) genes were physically mapped onto nine chromosomes of foxtail millet. Gene duplication study showed that segmental- and tandem-duplication have occurred in genome resulting in expansion of this gene family. The protein domain investigation classified SiMYB proteins into three classes according to number of MYB repeats present. The phylogenetic analysis categorized SiMYBs into ten groups (I-X). SiMYB-based comparative mapping revealed a maximum orthology between foxtail millet and sorghum, followed by maize, rice and Brachypodium. Heat map analysis showed tissue-specific expression pattern of predominant SiMYB genes. Expression profiling of candidate MYB genes against abiotic stresses and hormone treatments using qRT-PCR revealed specific and/or overlapping expression patterns of SiMYBs. Taken together, the present study provides a foundation for evolutionary and functional characterization of MYB TFs in foxtail millet to dissect their functions in response to environmental stimuli.
Project description:Foxtail millet (Setaria italica (L.) Beauv) is one of the earliest domesticated grains, which has been cultivated in northern China by 8,700 years before present (YBP) and across Eurasia by 4,000 YBP. Owing to a small genome and diploid nature, foxtail millet is a tractable model crop for studying functional genomics of millets and bioenergy grasses. In this study, we examined nucleotide sequence diversity, geographic structure, and levels of linkage disequilibrium at four nuclear loci (ADH1, G3PDH, IGS1 and TPI1) in representative samples of 311 landrace accessions across its cultivated range. Higher levels of nucleotide sequence and haplotype diversity were observed in samples from China relative to other sampled regions. Genetic assignment analysis classified the accessions into seven clusters based on nucleotide sequence polymorphisms. Intralocus LD decayed rapidly to half the initial value within ~1.2 kb or less.
Project description:Millets are the strategic food crops in arid and drought-prone ecologies. Millets, by virtue of nature, are very well-adapted to drought conditions and able to produce sustainable yield. Millets have important nutrients that can help prevent micro-nutrient malnutrition. As a result of the adverse effect of climate change and widespread malnutrition, millets have attained a strategic position to sustain food and nutritional security. Although millets can adapt well to the drought ecologies where other cereals fail completely, the yield level is very low under stress. There is a tremendous opportunity to increase the genetic potential of millet crops in dry lands when the genetics of the drought-tolerance mechanism is fully explained. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are the class of small RNAs that control trait expression. They are part of the gene regulation but little studied in millets. In the present study, novel miRNAs and gene targets were identified from the genomic resources of pearl millet, sorghum, foxtail millet, finger millet, and proso millet through <i>in silico</i> approaches. A total of 1,002 miRNAs from 280 families regulating 23,158 targets were identified using different filtration criteria in five millet species. The unique as well as conserved structural features and functional characteristics of miRNA across millets were explained. About 84 miRNAs were conserved across millets in different species combinations, which explained the evolutionary relationship of the millets. Further, 215 miRNAs controlling 155 unique major drought-responsive genes, transcription factors, and protein families revealed the genetics of drought tolerance that are accumulated in the millet genomes. The miRNAs regulating the drought stress through specific targets or multiple targets showed through a network analysis. The identified genes regulated by miRNA genes could be useful in developing functional markers and used for yield improvement under drought in millets as well as in other crops.
Project description:Foxtail millet is one of the world's oldest cultivated crops. It has been adopted as a model organism for providing a deeper understanding of plant biology. In this study, 45 simple sequence repeats (SSR) markers of Setaria italica were developed. These markers showing polymorphism were screened in 223 samples from 12 foxtail millet populations around Taiwan. The most common dinucleotide and trinucleotide repeat motifs are AC/TG (84.21%) and CAT (46.15%). The average number of alleles (N(a)), the average heterozygosities observed (H(o)) and expected (H(e)) are 3.73, 0.714, 0.587, respectively. In addition, 24 SSR markers had shown transferability to six related Poaceae species. These new markers provide tools for examining genetic relatedness among foxtail millet populations and other related species. It is suitable for germplasm management and protection in Poaceae.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Foxtail millet (Setaria italica) has been developed into a model genetical system for deciphering architectural evolution, C4 photosynthesis, nutritional properties, abiotic tolerance and bioenergy in cereal grasses because of its advantageous characters with the small genome size, self-fertilization, short growing cycle, small growth stature, efficient genetic transformation and abundant diverse germplasm resources. Therefore, excavating QTLs of yield component traits, which are closely related to aspects mentioned above, will further facilitate genetic research in foxtail millet and close cereal species. RESULTS:Here, 164 Recombinant inbreed lines from a cross between Longgu7 and Yugu1 were created and 1,047,978 SNPs were identified between both parents via resequencing. A total of 3413 bin markers developed from SNPs were used to construct a binary map, containing 3963 recombinant breakpoints and totaling 1222.26?cM with an average distance of 0.36?cM between adjacent markers. Forty-seven QTLs were identified for four traits of straw weight, panicle weight, grain weight per plant and 1000-grain weight. These QTLs explained 5.5-14.7% of phenotypic variance. Thirty-nine favorable QTL alleles were found to inherit from Yugu1. Three stable QTLs were detected in multi-environments, and nine QTL clusters were identified on Chromosome 3, 6, 7 and 9. CONCLUSIONS:A high-density genetic map with 3413 bin markers was constructed and three stable QTLs and 9 QTL clusters for yield component traits were identified. The results laid a powerful foundation for fine mapping, identifying candidate genes, elaborating molecular mechanisms and application in foxtail millet breeding programs by marker-assisted selection.
Project description:It is generally understood that foxtail millet and broomcorn millet were initially domesticated in Northern China where they eventually became the dominant plant food crops. The rarity of older archaeological sites and archaeobotanical work in the region, however, renders both the origins of these plants and their processes of domestication poorly understood. Here we present ancient starch grain assemblages recovered from cultural deposits, including carbonized residues adhering to an early pottery sherd as well as grinding stone tools excavated from the sites of Nanzhuangtou (11.5-11.0 cal kyBP) and Donghulin (11.0-9.5 cal kyBP) in the North China Plain. Our data extend the record of millet use in China by nearly 1,000 y, and the record of foxtail millet in the region by at least two millennia. The patterning of starch residues within the samples allow for the formulation of the hypothesis that foxtail millets were cultivated for an extended period of two millennia, during which this crop plant appears to have been undergoing domestication. Future research in the region will help clarify the processes in place.
Project description:The APETALA2/ethylene-responsive element binding factor (AP2/ERF) family is one of the largest transcription factor (TF) families in plants that includes four major sub-families, namely AP2, DREB (dehydration responsive element binding), ERF (ethylene responsive factors) and RAV (Related to ABI3/VP). AP2/ERFs are known to play significant roles in various plant processes including growth and development and biotic and abiotic stress responses. Considering this, a comprehensive genome-wide study was conducted in foxtail millet (Setaria italica L.). A total of 171 AP2/ERF genes were identified by systematic sequence analysis and were physically mapped onto nine chromosomes. Phylogenetic analysis grouped AP2/ERF genes into six classes (I to VI). Duplication analysis revealed that 12 (?7%) SiAP2/ERF genes were tandem repeated and 22 (?13%) were segmentally duplicated. Comparative physical mapping between foxtail millet AP2/ERF genes and its orthologs of sorghum (18 genes), maize (14 genes), rice (9 genes) and Brachypodium (6 genes) showed the evolutionary insights of AP2/ERF gene family and also the decrease in orthology with increase in phylogenetic distance. The evolutionary significance in terms of gene-duplication and divergence was analyzed by estimating synonymous and non-synonymous substitution rates. Expression profiling of candidate AP2/ERF genes against drought, salt and phytohormones revealed insights into their precise and/or overlapping expression patterns which could be responsible for their functional divergence in foxtail millet. The study showed that the genes SiAP2/ERF-069, SiAP2/ERF-103 and SiAP2/ERF-120 may be considered as potential candidate genes for further functional validation as well for utilization in crop improvement programs for stress resistance since these genes were up-regulated under drought and salinity stresses in ABA dependent manner. Altogether the present study provides new insights into evolution, divergence and systematic functional analysis of AP2/ERF gene family at genome level in foxtail millet which may be utilized for improving stress adaptation and tolerance in millets, cereals and bioenergy grasses.
Project description:WD40 proteins play a crucial role in diverse protein-protein interactions by acting as scaffolding molecules and thus assisting in the proper activity of proteins. Hence, systematic characterization and expression profiling of these WD40 genes in foxtail millet would enable us to understand the networks of WD40 proteins and their biological processes and gene functions. In the present study, a genome-wide survey was conducted and 225 potential WD40 genes were identified. Phylogenetic analysis categorized the WD40 proteins into 5 distinct sub-families (I-V). Gene Ontology annotation revealed the biological roles of the WD40 proteins along with its cellular components and molecular functions. In silico comparative mapping with sorghum, maize and rice demonstrated the orthologous relationships and chromosomal rearrangements including duplication, inversion and deletion of WD40 genes. Estimation of synonymous and non-synonymous substitution rates revealed its evolutionary significance in terms of gene-duplication and divergence. Expression profiling against abiotic stresses provided novel insights into specific and/or overlapping expression patterns of SiWD40 genes. Homology modeling enabled three-dimensional structure prediction was performed to understand the molecular functions of WD40 proteins. Although, recent findings had shown the importance of WD40 domains in acting as hubs for cellular networks during many biological processes, it has invited a lesser research attention unlike other common domains. Being a most promiscuous interactors, WD40 domains are versatile in mediating critical cellular functions and hence this genome-wide study especially in the model crop foxtail millet would serve as a blue-print for functional characterization of WD40s in millets and bioenergy grass species. In addition, the present analyses would also assist the research community in choosing the candidate WD40s for comprehensive studies towards crop improvement of millets and biofuel grasses.