Transcriptomics analysis of hulless barley during grain development with a focus on starch biosynthesis.
ABSTRACT: Hulless barley, with its unique nutritional value and potential health benefits, has increasingly attracted attentions in recent years. However, the transcription dynamics during hulless barley grain development is not well understood. In the present study, we investigated the transcriptome changes during barley grain development using Illumina paired-end RNA-sequencing. Two datasets of the developing grain transcriptomes from two barley landraces with the differential seed starch synthesis traits were generated, and comparative transcriptome approach in both genotypes was performed. The results showed that 38 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were found co-modulated in both genotypes during the barley grain development. Of those, the proteins encoded by most of those DGEs were found, such as alpha-amylase-related proteins, lipid-transfer protein, homeodomain leucine zipper (HD-Zip), NUCLEAR FACTOR-Y, subunit B (NF-YBs), as well as MYB transcription factors. More interestingly, two genes Hvulgare_GLEAN_10012370 and Hvulgare_GLEAN_10021199 encoding SuSy, AGPase (Hvulgare_GLEAN_10033640 and Hvulgare_GLEAN_10056301), as well as SBE2b (Hvulgare_GLEAN_10018352) were found to significantly contribute to the regulatory mechanism during grain development in both genotypes. Moreover, six co-expression modules associated with specific biological processes or pathways (M1 to M6) were identified by consensus co-expression network. Significantly enriched pathways of those module genes showed difference in both genotypes. These results will expand our understanding of the complex molecular mechanism of starch synthesis during barley grain development.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Hulless barley is attracting increasing attention due to its unique nutritional value and potential health benefits. However, the molecular biology of the barley grain development and nutrient storage are not well understood. Furthermore, the genetic potential of hulless barley has not been fully tapped for breeding. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: In the present study, we investigated the transcriptome features during hulless barley grain development. Using Illumina paired-end RNA-Sequencing, we generated two data sets of the developing grain transcriptomes from two hulless barley landraces. A total of 13.1 and 12.9 million paired-end reads with lengths of 90 bp were generated from the two varieties and were assembled to 48,863 and 45,788 unigenes, respectively. A combined dataset of 46,485 All-Unigenes were generated from two transcriptomes with an average length of 542 bp, and 36,278 among were annotated with gene descriptions, conserved protein domains or gene ontology terms. Furthermore, sequences and expression levels of genes related to the biosynthesis of storage reserve compounds (starch, protein, and ?-glucan) were analyzed, and their temporal and spatial patterns were deduced from the transcriptome data of cultivated barley Morex. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: We established a sequences and functional annotation integrated database and examined the expression profiles of the developing grains of Tibetan hulless barley. The characterization of genes encoding storage proteins and enzymes of starch synthesis and (1-3;1-4)-?-D-glucan synthesis provided an overview of changes in gene expression associated with grain nutrition and health properties. Furthermore, the characterization of these genes provides a gene reservoir, which helps in quality improvement of hulless barley.
Project description:In the present study, we investigated the transcriptome features during hulless barley grain development. Using Illumina paired-end RNA-Sequencing, we generated two data sets of the developing grain transcriptomes from two hulless barley landraces.
Project description:Starch consists of two types of molecules: amylose and amylopectin. The objective of this study was increase understanding about mechanisms related to starch accumulation in hulless barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) grain by measuring temporal changes in (i) grain amylose and amylopectin content, (ii) starch synthase activity, and (iii) the relative expressions of key starch-related genes.The amylopectin/amylose ratio gradually declined in both Beiqing 6 and Kunlun 12. In both cultivars, the activities of adenosine diphosphate glucose pyrophosphorylase, soluble starch synthase (SSS), granule bound starch synthase (GBSS), and starch branching enzyme (SBE) increased steadily during grain filling, reaching their maximums 20-25 days after anthesis. The activities of SSS and SBE were greater in Ganken 5 than in either Beiqing 6 or Kunlun 12. The expression of GBSS I was greater in Beiqing 6 and Kunlun 12 than in Ganken 5. In contrast, the expression of SSS I, SSS II and SBE I was greater in Ganken 5 than in Beiqing 6 and Kunlun 12. The peak in GBSS I expression was later than that of SSS I, SSS II, SBE IIa and SBE IIb. The GBSS I transcript in Kunlun 12 was expressed on average 90 times more than the GBSS II transcript.The results suggest that SBE and SSS may control starch synthesis at the transcriptional level, whereas GBSS I may control starch synthesis at the post transcriptional level. GBSS I is mainly responsible for amylose synthesis whereas SSS I and SBE II are mainly responsible for amylopectin synthesis in amyloplasts.
Project description:Hulless oats and hulless barley are highly valued for their excellent nutritional attributes and are increasingly being promoted in human nutrition. However, special attention should be paid to the risk of their contamination by Fusarium mycotoxins, as the rate of mycotoxin reduction during processing could be much lower than that for hulled cereals. In the present study, mycotoxin contamination of two cultivars, each of hulless oats and barley suitable for food purposes were studied in a 3-year field trial established in two contrasting environments. The contents of the mycotoxins regulated by law (deoxynivalenol and zearalenone) were low, and the present legal limits for their maximum content in unprocessed cereals were far from being exceeded. The mycotoxins most frequently occurring in hulless barley were enniatins (enniatin B, enniatin B1 and enniatin A1), beauvericin and nivalenol; hulless oats most frequently contained the HT-2 and T-2 toxins, beauvericin and enniatin B. The contents of enniatins and nivalenol were higher in barley than in oats. Close, positive relationships between the contents of the individual enniatins and between enniatins, beauvericin and nivalenol were observed, which implies that co-exposure could enhance the toxic potential of these mycotoxins through synergistic effects. The results highlight the need to pay more attention to the occurrence of enniatins, beauvericine and nivalenol in hulless oats and barley used for food purposes.
Project description:Hulless barley (Hordeum vulgare L. var. nudum) is a barley variety that has loose husk cover of the caryopses. Because of the ease in processing and edibility, hulless barley has been locally cultivated and used as human food. For example, in Tibetan Plateau, hulless barley is the staple food for human and essential livestock feed. Although the draft genome of hulless barley has been sequenced, the assembly remains fragmented. Here, we reported an improved high-quality assembly and annotation of the Tibetan hulless barley genome using more than 67X PacBio long-reads. The N50 contig length of the new assembly is at least more than 19 times larger than other available barley assemblies. The new genome assembly also showed high gene completeness and high collinearity of genome synteny with the previously reported barley genome. The new genome assembly and annotation will not only remove major hurdles in genetic analysis and breeding of hulless barley, but will also serve as a key resource for studying barley genomics and genetics.
Project description:Hulless barley (Hordeum vulgare L. var. nudum) is one of the most important crops in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. Soil salinity seriously affects its cultivation. To investigate the mechanism of salt stress response during seed germination, two contrasting hulless barley genotypes were selected to first investigate the molecular mechanism of seed salinity response during the germination stage using RNA-sequencing and isobaric tags for relative and absolute quantitation technologies. Compared to the salt-sensitive landrace lk621, the salt-tolerant one lk573 germinated normally under salt stress. The changes in hormone contents also differed between lk621 and lk573. In lk573, 1597 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) and 171 differentially expressed proteins (DEPs) were specifically detected at 4 h after salt stress, and correspondingly, 2748 and 328 specifically detected at 16 h. Most specific DEGs in lk573 were involved in response to oxidative stress, biosynthetic process, protein localization, and vesicle-mediated transport, and most specific DEPs were assigned to an oxidation-reduction process, carbohydrate metabolic process, and protein phosphorylation. There were 96 genes specifically differentially expressed at both transcriptomic and proteomic levels in lk573. These results revealed the molecular mechanism of salt tolerance and provided candidate genes for further study and salt-tolerant improvement in hulless barley.
Project description:The Tibetan hulless barley (Hordeum vulgare L. var. nudum), also called "Qingke" in Chinese and "Ne" in Tibetan, is the staple food for Tibetans and an important livestock feed in the Tibetan Plateau. The diploid nature and adaptation to diverse environments of the highland give it unique resources for genetic research and crop improvement. Here we produced a 3.89-Gb draft assembly of Tibetan hulless barley with 36,151 predicted protein-coding genes. Comparative analyses revealed the divergence times and synteny between barley and other representative Poaceae genomes. The expansion of the gene family related to stress responses was found in Tibetan hulless barley. Resequencing of 10 barley accessions uncovered high levels of genetic variation in Tibetan wild barley and genetic divergence between Tibetan and non-Tibetan barley genomes. Selective sweep analyses demonstrate adaptive correlations of genes under selection with extensive environmental variables. Our results not only construct a genomic framework for crop improvement but also provide evolutionary insights of highland adaptation of Tibetan hulless barley.
Project description:Salinity stress represents one of the most harmful abiotic stresses for agricultural productivity. Tibetan hulless barley is an important economic crop widely grown in highly stressful conditions in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau and is often challenged by salinity stress. To investigate the temporal metabolic responses to salinity stress in hulless barley, we performed a widely targeted metabolomic analysis of 72 leaf samples from two contrasting cultivars. We identified 642 compounds 57 % of which were affected by salt stress in the two cultivars, principally amino acids and derivatives, organic acids, nucleotides, and derivatives and flavonoids. A total of 13 stress-related metabolites including piperidine, L-tryptophan, L-glutamic acid, L-saccharopine, L-phenylalanine, 6-methylcoumarin, cinnamic acid, inosine 5'-monophosphate, aminomalonic acid, 6-aminocaproic acid, putrescine, tyramine and abscisic acid (ABA) represent the core metabolome responsive to salinity stress in hulless barley regardless of the tolerance level. In particular, we found that the ABA signalling pathway is essential to salt stress response in hulless barley. The high tolerance of the cultivar 0119 is due to a metabolic reprogramming at key stress times. During the early salt stress stages (0-24 h), 0119 tended to save energy through reduced glycolysis, nucleotide metabolism and amino acid synthesis, while increased antioxidant compounds such as flavonoids. Under prolonged stress (48-72 h), 0119 significantly enhanced energy production and amino acid synthesis. In addition, some important compatible solutes were strongly accumulated. By comparing the two cultivars, nine salt-tolerance biomarkers, mostly unreported salt-tolerance compounds in plants, were uncovered. Our study indicated that the salt tolerant hulless barley cultivar invokes a tolerance strategy which is conserved in other plant species. Overall, we provide for the first time some extensive metabolic data and some important salt-tolerance biomarkers which may assist in efforts to improve hulless barley tolerance to salinity stress.
Project description:The harsh environment on the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau gives Tibetan hulless barley (Hordeum vulgare var. nudum) great ability to resist adversities such as drought, salinity, and low temperature, and makes it a good subject for the analysis of drought tolerance mechanism. To elucidate the specific gene networks and pathways that contribute to its drought tolerance, and for identifying new candidate genes for breeding purposes, we performed a transcriptomic analysis using two accessions of Tibetan hulless barley, namely Z772 (drought-tolerant) and Z013 (drought-sensitive).There were more up-regulated genes of Z772 than Z013 under both mild (5439-VS-2604) and severe (7203-VS-3359) dehydration treatments. Under mild dehydration stress, the pathways exclusively enriched in drought-tolerance genotype Z772 included Protein processing in endoplasmic reticulum, tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle, Wax biosynthesis, and Spliceosome. Under severe dehydration stress, the pathways that were mainly enriched in Z772 included Carbon fixation in photosynthetic organisms, Pyruvate metabolism, Porphyrin and chlorophyll metabolism. The main differentially expressed genes (DEGs) in response to dehydration stress and genes whose expression was different between tolerant and sensitive genotypes were presented in this study, respectively. The candidate genes for drought tolerance were selected based on their expression patterns.The RNA-Seq data obtained in this study provided an initial overview on global gene expression patterns and networks that related to dehydration shock in Tibetan hulless barley. Furthermore, these data provided pathways and a targeted set of candidate genes that might be essential for deep analyzing the molecular mechanisms of plant tolerance to drought stress.
Project description:Background:Colored hulless barley are more suitable in food processing compared to normal (yellow) varieties because it is rich in bioactive compounds and produces higher extraction pearling fractions. Therefore, seed coat color is an important agronomic trait for the breeding and study of hulless barley. Results:Genotyping-by-sequencing single-nucleotide polymorphism (GBS-SNP) analysis of a doubled haploid (DH) mapping population (Nierumuzha × Kunlun10) was conducted to map the purple seed coat color genes (Psc). A high-density genetic map of hulless barley was constructed, which contains 3662 efficient SNP markers with 1129 bin markers. Seven linkage groups were resolved, which had a total length of 645.56 cM. Chromosome length ranged from 60.21 cM to 127.21 cM, with average marker density of 0.57 cM. A total of five loci accounting for 3.79% to 23.86% of the observed phenotypic variation for Psc were detected using this high-density map. Five structural candidate genes (F3'M, HID, UF3GT, UFGT and 5MAT) and one regulatory factor (Ant1) related to flavonoid or anthocyanin biosynthesis were identified.. Conclusions:Five structural candidate genes and one regulatory factor related to flavonoid or anthocyanin biosynthesis have been identified using a high-density genetic map of hulless barley. This study lays the foundation for map-based cloning of Psc but provides a valuable tool for studying marker-trait associations and its application to marker-assisted breeding of hulless barley.