The endogenous transposable element Tgm9 is suitable for generating knockout mutants for functional analyses of soybean genes and genetic improvement in soybean.
ABSTRACT: In soybean, variegated flowers can be caused by somatic excision of the CACTA-type transposable element Tgm9 from Intron 2 of the DFR2 gene encoding dihydroflavonol-4-reductase of the anthocyanin pigment biosynthetic pathway. DFR2 was mapped to the W4 locus, where the allele containing Tgm9 was termed w4-m. In this study we have demonstrated that previously identified morphological mutants (three chlorophyll deficient mutants, one male sterile-female fertile mutant, and three partial female sterile mutants) were caused by insertion of Tgm9 following its excision from DFR2. Analyses of Tgm9 insertion sites among 105 independent mutants demonstrated that Tgm9 hops to all 20 soybean chromosomes from its original location on Chromosome 17. Some genomic regions are prone to increased Tgm9-insertions. Tgm9 transposed over 25% of the time into exon or intron sequences. Tgm9 is therefore suitable for generating an indexed insertional mutant collection for functional analyses of most soybean genes. Furthermore, desirable Tgm9-induced stable knockout mutants can be utilized in generating improved traits for commercial soybean cultivars.
Project description:Active endogenous transposable elements, useful tools for gene isolation, have not been reported from any legume species. An active transposable element was suggested to reside in the W4 locus that governs flower color in soybean. Through biochemical and molecular analyses of several revertants of the w4-m allele, we have shown that the W4 locus encodes dihydroflavonol-4-reductase 2 (DFR2). w4-m has arisen through insertion of Tgm9, a 20,548-bp CACTA-like transposable element, into the second intron of DFR2. Tgm9 showed high nucleic acid sequence identity to Tgmt*. Its 5' and 3' terminal inverted repeats start with conserved CACTA sequence. The 3' subterminal region is highly repetitive. Tgm9 carries TNP1- and TNP2-like transposase genes that are expressed in the mutable line, T322 (w4-m). The element excises at a high frequency from both somatic and germinal tissues. Following excision, reinsertions of Tgm9 into the DFR2 promoter generated novel stable alleles, w4-dp (dilute purple flowers) and w4-p (pale flowers). We hypothesize that the element is fractured during transposition, and truncated versions of the element in new insertion sites cause stable mutations. The highly active endogenous transposon, Tgm9, should facilitate genomics studies specifically that relate to legume biology.
Project description:The W4 locus in soybean encodes a dihydroflavonol-4-reductase (DFR2) that regulates pigmentation patterns in flowers and hypocotyl. The mutable w4-m allele that governs variegated flowers has arisen through insertion of a CACTA-type transposable element, Tgm9, in DFR2. In the w4-m line, reversion from variegated to purple flower indicates excision of Tgm9, and its insertion at a new locus. Previously, we have identified a male-sterile, female-sterile mutant among the selfed progenies of a revertant plant carrying only purple flowers. Co-segregation between Tgm9 and the sterility phenotype suggested that the mutant was generated by insertion of Tgm9 at the St8 locus. The transposon was localized to exon 10 of Glyma.16G072300 that shows high identity to the MER3 DNA helicase involved in crossing over. Molecular analysis of fertile branches from two independent revertant plants confirmed precise excision of Tgm9 from the st8 allele, which restored fertility. In soybean, the gene is expressed in flower-buds, trifoliate leaves and stem. Phylogenetic analysis placed St8 in a clade with the Arabidopsis and rice MER3 suggesting that St8 is most likely the orthologous MER3 soybean gene. This study established the utility of Tgm9 in gene identification as well as in forward and reverse genetics studies.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Flower color of soybean is primarily controlled by six genes, viz., W1, W2, W3, W4, Wm and Wp. This study was conducted to investigate the genetic and chemical basis of newly-identified flower color variants including two soybean mutant lines, 222-A-3 (near white flower) and E30-D-1 (light purple flower), a near-isogenic line (Clark-w4), flower color variants (T321 and T369) descended from the w4-mutable line and kw4 (near white flower, Glycine soja). RESULTS: Complementation tests revealed that the flower color of 222-A-3 and kw4 was controlled by the recessive allele (w4) of the W4 locus encoding dihydroflavonol 4-reductase 2 (DFR2). In 222-A-3, a single base was deleted in the first exon resulting in a truncated polypeptide consisting of 24 amino acids. In Clark-w4, base substitution of the first nucleotide of the fourth intron abolished the 5' splice site, resulting in the retention of the intron. The DFR2 gene of kw4 was not expressed. The above results suggest that complete loss-of-function of DFR2 gene leads to near white flowers. Light purple flower of E30-D-1 was controlled by a new allele at the W4 locus, w4-lp. The gene symbol was approved by the Soybean Genetics Committee. In E30-D-1, a single-base substitution changed an amino acid at position 39 from arginine to histidine. Pale flowers of T369 had higher expression levels of the DFR2 gene. These flower petals contained unique dihydroflavonols that have not yet been reported to occur in soybean and G. soja. CONCLUSIONS: Complete loss-of-function of DFR2 gene leads to near white flowers. A new allele of the W4 locus, w4-lp regulates light purple flowers. Single amino acid substitution was associated with light purple flowers. Flower petals of T369 had higher levels of DFR2 gene expression and contained unique dihydroflavonols that are absent in soybean and G. soja. Thus, mutants of the DFR2 gene have unique flavonoid compositions and display a wide variety of flower color patterns in soybean, from near white, light purple, dilute purple to pale.
Project description:In soybean, flavonoid 3'5'-hydroxylase (F3'5'H) and dihydroflavonol-4-reductase (DFR) play a crucial role in the production of anthocyanin pigments. Loss-of-function of the W1 locus, which encodes the former, or W3 and W4, which encode the latter, always produces white flowers. In this study, we searched for new genetic components responsible for the production of white flowers in soybean and isolated four white-flowered mutant lines, i.e., two Glycine soja accessions (CW12700 and CW13381) and two EMS-induced mutants of Glycine max (PE1837 and PE636). F3'5'H expression in CW12700, PE1837, and PE636 was normal, whereas that in CW13381 was aberrant and missing the third exon. Sequence analysis of F3'5'H of CW13381 revealed the presence of an indel (~90-bp AT-repeat) in the second intron. In addition, the F3'5'H of CW12700, PE1837, and PE636 harbored unique single-nucleotide substitutions. The single nucleotide polymorphisms resulted in substitutions of amino acid residues located in or near the SRS4 domain of F3'5'H, which is essential for substrate recognition. 3D structure modeling of F3'5'H indicated that the substitutions could interfere with an interaction between the substrate and heme group and compromise the conformation of the active site of F3'5'H. Recombination analysis revealed a tight correlation between all of the mutant alleles at the W1 locus and white flower color. On the basis of the characterization of the new mutant alleles, we discussed the biological implications of F3'5'H and DFR in the determination of flower colors in soybean.
Project description:BACKGROUND:The molecular organization of very few genetically defined CACTA transposon systems have been characterized thoroughly as those of Spm/En in maize, Tam1 of Antirrhinum majus Candystripe1 (Cs1) from Sorghum bicolor and CAC1 from Arabidopsis thaliana, for example. To date, only defective deletion derivatives of CACTA elements have been described for soybean, an economically important plant species whose genome sequence will be completed in 2008. RESULTS:We identified a 20.5 kb insertion in a soybean flavonoid 3'-hydroxylase (F3'H) gene representing the t* allele (stable gray trichome color) whose origin traces to a single mutable chimeric plant displaying both tawny and gray trichomes. This 20.5 kb insertion has the molecular structure of a putative autonomous transposon of the CACTA family, designated Tgmt*. It encodes a large gene that was expressed in two sister isolines (T* and tm) of the stable gray line (t*) from which Tgmt* was isolated. RT-PCR derived cDNAs uncovered the structure of a large precursor mRNA as well as alternatively spliced transcripts reminiscent of the TNPA-mRNA generated by the En-1 element of maize but without sequence similarity to the maize TNPA. The larger mRNA encodes a transposase with a tnp2 and TNP1-transposase family domains. Because the two soybean lines expressing Tgmt* were derived from the same mutable chimeric plant that created the stable gray trichome t* allele line from which the element was isolated, Tgmt* has the potential to be an autonomous element that was rapidly inactivated in the stable gray trichome t* line. Comparison of Tgmt* to previously described Tgm elements demonstrated that two subtypes of CACTA transposon families exist in soybean based on divergence of their characteristic subterminal repeated motifs and their transposases. In addition, we report the sequence and annotation of a BAC clone containing the F3'H gene (T locus) which was interrupted by the novel Tgmt* element in the gray trichome allele t*. CONCLUSION:The molecular characterization of a 20.5 kb insertion in the flavonoid 3'-hydroxylase (F3'H) gene of a soybean gray pubescence allele (t*) identified the structure of a CACTA transposon designated Tgmt*. Besides the terminal inverted repeats and subterminal repeated motifs,Tgmt* encoded a large gene with two putative functions that are required for excision and transposition of a CACTA element, a transposase and the DNA binding protein known to associate to the subterminal repeated motifs. The degree of dissimilarity between Tgmt* transposase and subterminal repeated motifs with those of previously characterized defective CACTA elements (Tgm1-7) were evidence of the existence of two subfamilies of CACTA transposons in soybean, an observation not previously reported in other plants. In addition, our analyses of a genetically active and potentially autonomous element sheds light on the complete structure of a soybean element that is useful for annotation of the repetitive fraction of the soybean genome sequence and may prove useful for transposon tagging or transposon display experiments in different genetic lines.
Project description:KEY MESSAGE:Map-based cloning revealed that two novel soybean distorted trichome mutants were due to loss function of GmNAP1 gene, which affected the trichome morphology and pavement cell ploidy by regulating actin filament assembly. Trichomes increase both biotic and abiotic stress resistance in soybean. In this study, Gmdtm1-1 and Gmdtm1-2 mutants with shorter trichomes and bigger epidermal pavement cells were isolated from an ethyl methylsulfonate mutagenized population. Both of them had reduced plant height and smaller seeds. Map-based cloning and bulked segregant analysis identified that a G-A transition at the 3' boundary of the sixth intron of Glyma.20G019300 in the Gmdtm1-1 mutant and another G-A transition mutation at the 5' boundary of the fourteenth intron of Glyma.20G019300 in Gmdtm1-2; these mutations disrupted spliceosome recognition sites creating truncated proteins. Glyma.20G019300 encodes a Glycine max NCK-associated protein 1 homolog (GmNAP1) in soybean. Further analysis revealed that the GmNAP1 involved in actin filament assembling and genetic information processing pathways during trichome and pavement cell development. This study shows that GmNAP1 plays an important role in soybean growth and development and agronomic traits.
Project description:We determined the molecular basis of three soybean lines that vary in seed coat color at the R locus which is thought to encode a MYB transcription factor. RM55-r(m) is homozygous for a mutable allele (r(m)) that specifies black and brown striped seeds; RM30-R* is a stable black revertant isoline derived from the mutable line; and RM38-r has brown seed coats due to a recessive r allele shown to translate a truncated MYB protein. Using long range PCR, 454 sequencing of amplicons, and whole genome re-sequencing, we determined that the variegated RM55-r(m) line had a 13 kb CACTA subfamily transposon insertion (designated TgmR*) at a position 110 bp from the beginning of Intron2 of the R locus, Glyma09g36983. Although the MYB encoded by R was expressed at only very low levels in older seed coats of the black revertant RM30-R* line, it upregulated expression of anthocyanidin synthase genes (ANS2, ANS3) to promote the synthesis of anthocyanins. Surprisingly, the RM30-R* revertant also carried the 13 kb TgmR* insertion in Intron2. Using RNA-Seq, we showed that intron splicing was accurate, albeit at lower levels, despite the presence of the 13 kb TgmR* element. As determined by whole genome methylation sequencing, we demonstrate that the TgmR* sequence was relatively more methylated in RM30-R* than in the mutable RM55-r(m) progenitor line. The stabilized and more methylated RM30-R* revertant line apparently lacks effective binding of a transposae to its subterminal repeats, thus allowing intron splicing to proceed resulting in sufficient MYB protein to stimulate anthocyanin production and thus black seed coats. In this regard, the TgmR* element in soybean resembles McClintock's Spm-suppressible and change-of-state alleles of maize. This comparison explains the opposite effects of the TgmR* element on intron splicing of the MYB gene in which it resides depending on the methylation state of the element.
Project description:BACKGROUND: CACTA elements are DNA transposons and are found in numerous organisms. Despite their low activity, several thousand copies can be identified in many genomes. CACTA elements transpose using a 'cut-and-paste' mechanism, which is facilitated by a DDE transposase. DDE transposases from CACTA elements contain, despite their conserved function, different exon numbers among various CACTA families. While earlier studies analyzed the ancestral history of the DDE transposases, no studies have examined exon loss and gain with a view of mechanisms that could drive the changes. RESULTS: We analyzed 64 transposases from different CACTA families among monocotyledonous and eudicotyledonous host species. The annotation of the exon/intron boundaries showed a range from one to six exons. A robust multiple sequence alignment of the 64 transposases based on their protein sequences was created and used for phylogenetic analysis, which revealed eight different clades. We observed that the exon numbers in CACTA transposases are not specific for a host genome. We found that ancient CACTA lineages diverged before the divergence of monocotyledons and eudicotyledons. Most exon/intron boundaries were found in three distinct regions among all the transposases, grouping 63 conserved intron/exon boundaries. CONCLUSIONS: We propose a model for the ancestral CACTA transposase gene, which consists of four exons, that predates the divergence of the monocotyledons and eudicotyledons. Based on this model, we propose pathways of intron loss or gain to explain the observed variation in exon numbers. While intron loss appears to have prevailed, a putative case of intron gain was nevertheless observed.
Project description:The wide range of flower colors in soybean is controlled by six independent loci (W1, W2, W3, W4, Wm, and Wp). Among these loci, mutations in the W3 locus under the w4 allelic background (i.e., w3w4) produce near-white flowers, while the W3w4 genotype produces purple throat flowers. Although a gene encoding dihydroflavonol 4-reductase, DFR1, has been known to be closely associated with the W3 locus, its molecular identity has not yet been characterized. In the present study, we aimed to determine whether DFR1 is responsible for allelic variations in the W3 locus. On the basis of the sequence of a DFR probe, Glyma.14G072700 was identified as a candidate gene for DFR1, and nucleotide sequences of Glyma.14G072700 from cultivars with previously validated genotypes for the W3 locus were determined. As a result, a number of nucleotide polymorphisms, mainly single-base substitutions, between both coding and 5'-upstream region sequences of the W3 and w3 alleles were identified. Among them, an indel of 311-bp in the 5'-upstream region was noteworthy, since the Glyma.14G072700 in all the w3 alleles examined contained the indel, whereas that in all the W3 alleles did not; the former was barely expressed, but the latter was well expressed. These results suggest that Glyma.14G072700 is likely to correspond to DFR1 for the W3 locus and that its expression patterns may lead to allelic color phenotypes of W3 and w3 alleles under the w4 allelic background.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Male sterility has tremendous scientific and economic importance in hybrid seed production. Identification and characterization of a stable male sterility gene will be highly beneficial for making hybrid seed production economically feasible. In soybean, eleven male-sterile, female-fertile mutant lines (ms1, ms2, ms3, ms4, ms5, ms6, ms7, ms8, ms9, msMOS, and msp) have been identified and mapped onto various soybean chromosomes, however the causal genes responsible for male sterility are not isolated. The objective of this study was to identify and functionally characterize the gene responsible for the male sterility in the ms4 mutant. RESULTS:The ms4 locus was fine mapped to a 216 kb region, which contains 23 protein-coding genes including Glyma.02G243200, an ortholog of Arabidopsis MALE MEIOCYTE DEATH 1 (MMD1), which is a Plant Homeodomain (PHD) protein involved in male fertility. Isolation and sequencing of Glyma.02G243200 from the ms4 mutant line showed a single base insertion in the 3rd exon causing a premature stop codon resulting in truncated protein production. Phylogenetic analysis showed presence of a homolog protein (MS4_homolog) encoded by the Glyma.14G212300 gene. Both proteins were clustered within legume-specific clade of the phylogenetic tree and were likely the result of segmental duplication during the paleoploidization events in soybean. The comparative expression analysis of Ms4 and Ms4_homologs across the soybean developmental and reproductive stages showed significantly higher expression of Ms4 in early flowering (flower bud differentiation) stage than its homolog. The functional complementation of Arabidopsis mmd1 mutant with the soybean Ms4 gene produced normal stamens, successful tetrad formation, fertile pollens and viable seeds, whereas the Ms4_homolog was not able to restore male fertility. CONCLUSIONS:Overall, this is the first report, where map based cloning approach was employed to isolate and characterize a gene responsible for the male-sterile phenotype in soybean. Characterization of male sterility genes may facilitate the establishment of a stable male sterility system, highly desired for the viability of hybrid seed production in soybean. Additionally, translational genomics and genome editing technologies can be utilized to generate new male-sterile lines in other plant species.