Modeling the flowering sensitivity of five accessions of wild soybean (Glycine soja) to temperature and photoperiod, and its latitudinal cline.
ABSTRACT: The introgression from genetically modified soybean (Glycine max (L)) to wild soybean (Glycine soja Sieb. et Zucc.) could be threat the genetic diversity of wild soybean. Flowering synchrony is essential to the occurrence of outcrossing, but the flowering phenology of wild soybean is less well researched than that of cultivated soybean. We developed models to predict flowering initiation of wild soybean, based on the flowering initiation dates of wild soybean five accessions from different latitudes (31.4°N to 42.6°N) in growth chambers in which temperature and day length varied. Our proposed models predicted the flowering initiation date of wild soybean in the natural habitat well; the averaged difference from observed date in 5 areas was -1.8 days (-8 to +5). In the long day condition, there was a clear latitudinal cline of photoperiodic sensitivity throughout Japan. Accessions in southern part of Japan archipelago required higher temperature even under the short-day conditions and northern accessions were less-sensitive to long-day conditions. Our result showed the possibility of predicting the flowering initiation of wild soybean, corresponding to latitudes.
Project description:Flowering time is a key agronomic trait that directly influences the successful adaptation of soybean (Glycine max) to diverse latitudes and farming systems. GmFT2a and GmFT5a have been extensively identified as flowering activators and integrators in soybean. Here, we identified two quantitative trait loci (QTLs) regions harbouring GmFT2a and GmFT5a, respectively, associated with different genetic effects on flowering under different photoperiods. We analysed the flowering time of transgenic plants overexpressing GmFT2a or GmFT5a, ft2a mutants, ft5a mutants and ft2aft5a double mutants under long-day (LD) and short-day (SD) conditions. We confirmed that GmFT2a and GmFT5a are not redundant, they collectively regulate flowering time, and the effect of GmFT2a is more prominent than that of GmFT5a under SD conditions whereas GmFT5a has more significant effects than GmFT2a under LD conditions. GmFT5a, not GmFT2a, was essential for soybean to adapt to high latitude regions. The ft2aft5a double mutants showed late flowering by about 31.3 days under SD conditions and produced significantly increased numbers of pods and seeds per plant compared to the wild type. We speculate that these mutants may have enormous yield potential for the tropics. In addition, we examined the sequences of these two loci in 202 soybean accessions and investigated the flowering phenotypes, geographical distributions and maturity groups within major haplotypes. These results will contribute to soybean breeding and regional adaptability.
Project description:Photoperiodic control of flowering time is believed to affect latitudinal distribution of plants. The blue light receptor CRY2 regulates photoperiodic flowering in the experimental model plant Arabidopsis thaliana. However, it is unclear whether genetic variations affecting cryptochrome activity or expression is broadly associated with latitudinal distribution of plants. We report here an investigation of the function and expression of two cryptochromes in soybean, GmCRY1a and GmCRY2a. Soybean is a short-day (SD) crop commonly cultivated according to the photoperiodic sensitivity of cultivars. Both cultivated soybean (Glycine max) and its wild relative (G. soja) exhibit a strong latitudinal cline in photoperiodic flowering. Similar to their Arabidopsis counterparts, both GmCRY1a and GmCRY2a affected blue light inhibition of cell elongation, but only GmCRY2a underwent blue light- and 26S proteasome-dependent degradation. However, in contrast to Arabidopsis cryptochromes, soybean GmCRY1a, but not GmCRY2a, exhibited a strong activity promoting floral initiation, and the level of protein expression of GmCRY1a, but not GmCRY2a, oscillated with a circadian rhythm that has different phase characteristics in different photoperiods. Consistent with the hypothesis that GmCRY1a is a major regulator of photoperiodic flowering in soybean, the photoperiod-dependent circadian rhythmic expression of the GmCRY1a protein correlates with photoperiodic flowering and latitudinal distribution of soybean cultivars. We propose that genes affecting protein expression of the GmCRY1a protein play an important role in determining latitudinal distribution of soybeans.
Project description:A latitudinal cline in flowering time in accessions of Arabidopsis thaliana has been widely predicted because the environmental cues that promote flowering vary systematically with latitude, but evidence for such clines has been lacking. Here, we report evidence of a significant latitudinal cline in flowering time among 70 Northern European and Mediterranean ecotypes when grown under ecologically realistic conditions in a common garden environment. The detected cline, however, is found only in ecotypes with alleles of the flowering time gene FRIGIDA (FRI) that lack major deletions that would disrupt protein function, whereas there is no relationship between flowering time and latitude of origin among accessions with FRI alleles containing such deletions. Analysis of climatological data suggests that late flowering in accessions with putatively functional FRI was associated with reduced January precipitation at the site of origin, consistent with previous reports of a positive genetic correlation between water use efficiency and flowering time in Arabidopsis, and the pleiotropic effects of FRI of increasing water use efficiency. In accessions collected from Southern latitudes, we detected that putatively functional FRI alleles were associated with accelerated flowering relative to accessions with nonfunctional FRI under the winter conditions of our experiment. These results suggest that the ecological function of the vernalization requirement conferred by FRI differs across latitudes. More generally, our results indicate that by combining ecological and molecular genetic data, it is possible to understand the forces acting on life history transitions at the level of specific loci.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Absence of or low sensitivity to photoperiod is necessary for short-day crops, such as rice and soybean, to adapt to high latitudes. Photoperiod insensitivity in soybeans is controlled by two genetic systems and involves three important maturity genes: E1, a repressor for two soybean orthologs of Arabidopsis FLOWERING LOCUS T (GmFT2a and GmFT5a), and E3 and E4, which are phytochrome A genes. To elucidate the diverse mechanisms underlying photoperiod insensitivity in soybean, we assessed the genotypes of four maturity genes (E1 through E4) in early-flowering photoperiod-insensitive cultivars and their association with post-flowering responses. RESULTS: We found two novel dysfunctional alleles in accessions originally considered to have a dominant E3 allele according to known DNA markers. The E3 locus, together with E1 and E4, contained multiple dysfunctional alleles. We identified 15 multi-locus genotypes, which we subdivided into 6 genotypic groups by classifying their alleles by function. Of these, the e1-as/e3/E4 genotypic group required an additional novel gene (different from E1, E3, and E4) to condition photoperiod insensitivity. Despite their common pre-flowering photoperiod insensitivity, accessions with different multi-locus genotypes responded differently to the post-flowering photoperiod. Cultivars carrying E3 or E4 were sensitive to photoperiod for post-flowering characteristics, such as reproductive period and stem growth after flowering. The phytochrome A-regulated expression of the determinate growth habit gene Dt1, an ortholog of Arabidopsis TERMINAL FLOWER1, was involved in the persistence of the vegetative activity at the stem apical meristem of flower-induced plants under long-day conditions. CONCLUSIONS: Diverse genetic mechanisms underlie photoperiod insensitivity in soybean. At least three multi-locus genotypes consisting of various allelic combinations at E1, E3, and E4 conferred pre-flowering photoperiod insensitivity to soybean cultivars but led to different responses to photoperiod during post-flowering vegetative and reproductive development. The phyA genes E3 and E4 are major controllers underlying not only pre-flowering but also post-flowering photoperiod responses. The current findings improve our understanding of genetic diversity in pre-flowering photoperiod insensitivity and mechanisms of post-flowering photoperiod responses in soybean.
Project description:The timing of both flowering and maturation determine crop adaptability and productivity. Soybean (Glycine max) is cultivated across a wide range of latitudes. The molecular-genetic mechanisms for flowering in soybean have been determined for photoperiodic responses to long days (LDs), but remain only partially determined for the delay of flowering under short-day conditions, an adaptive trait of cultivars grown in lower latitudes. Here, we characterized the late-flowering (LF) habit introduced from the Thai cultivar K3 into a photoperiod-insensitive genetic background under different photo-thermal conditions, and we analyzed the genetic basis using quantitative trait locus (QTL) mapping. The LF habit resulted from a basic difference in the floral induction activity and from the suppression of flowering, which was caused by red light-enriched LD lengths and higher temperatures, during which FLOWERING LOCUS T (FT) orthologs, FT2a and FT5a, were strongly down-regulated. QTL mapping using gene-specific markers for flowering genes E2, FT2a and FT5a and 829 single nucleotide polymorphisms obtained from restriction-site associated DNA sequencing detected three QTLs controlling the LF habit. Of these, a QTL harboring FT2a exhibited large and stable effects under all the conditions tested. A resequencing analysis detected a nonsynonymous substitution in exon 4 of FT2a from K3, which converted the glycine conserved in FT-like proteins to the aspartic acid conserved in TERMINAL FLOWER 1-like proteins (floral repressors), suggesting a functional depression in the FT2a protein from K3. The effects of the remaining two QTLs, likely corresponding to E2 and FT5a, were environment dependent. Thus, the LF habit from K3 may be caused by the functional depression of FT2a and the down-regulation of two FT genes by red light-enriched LD conditions and high temperatures.
Project description:FLOWERING LOCUS T (FT) is an important floral integrator whose functions are conserved across plant species. In soybean, two orthologs, FT2a and FT5a, play a major role in initiating flowering. Their expression in response to different photoperiods is controlled by allelic combinations at the maturity loci E1 to E4, generating variation in flowering time among cultivars. We determined the molecular basis of a quantitative trait locus (QTL) for flowering time in linkage group J (Chromosome 16). Fine-mapping delimited the QTL to a genomic region of 107kb that harbors FT5a We detected 15 DNA polymorphisms between parents with the early-flowering (ef) and late-flowering (lf) alleles in the promoter region, an intron, and the 3' untranslated region of FT5a, although the FT5a coding regions were identical. Transcript abundance of FT5a was higher in near-isogenic lines for ef than in those for lf, suggesting that different transcriptional activities or mRNA stability caused the flowering time difference. Single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) calling from re-sequencing data for 439 cultivated and wild soybean accessions indicated that ef is a rare haplotype that is distinct from common haplotypes including lf The ef allele at FT5a may play an adaptive role at latitudes where early flowering is desirable.
Project description:Soybean (Glycine max L.) is a major legume crop that is mainly distributed in temperate regions. The adaptability of soybean to grow at relatively high latitudes is attributed to natural variations in major genes and quantitative trait loci (QTLs) that control flowering time and maturity. Identification of new QTLs and map-based cloning of candidate genes are the fundamental approaches in elucidating the mechanism underlying soybean flowering and adaptation. To identify novel QTLs/genes, we developed two F8:10 recombinant inbred lines (RILs) and evaluated the traits of time to flowering (R1), maturity (R8), and reproductive period (RP) in the field. To rapidly and efficiently identify QTLs that control these traits, next-generation sequencing (NGS)-based QTL analysis was performed. This study demonstrates that only one major QTL on chromosome 4 simultaneously controls R1, R8, and RP traits in the Dongnong 50 × Williams 82 (DW) RIL population. Furthermore, three QTLs were mapped to chromosomes 6, 11, and 16 in the Suinong 14 × Enrei (SE) RIL population. Two major pleiotropic QTLs on chromosomes 4 and 6 were shown to affect flowering time, maturity, and RP. A QTL influencing RP was identified on chromosome 11, and QTL on chromosome 16 was associated with time to flowering responses. All these QTLs contributed to soybean maturation. The QTLs identified in this study may be utilized in fine mapping and map-based cloning of candidate genes to elucidate the mechanisms underlying flowering and soybean adaptation to different latitudes and to breed novel soybean cultivars with optimal yield-related traits.
Project description:Flowering is an important agronomic trait that determines crop yield. Soybean is a major oilseed legume crop used for human and animal feed. Legumes have unique vegetative and floral complexities. Our understanding of the molecular basis of flower initiation and development in legumes is limited. Here, we address this by using a computational approach to examine flowering regulatory genes in the soybean genome in comparison to the most studied model plant, Arabidopsis. For this comparison, a genome-wide analysis of orthologue groups was performed, followed by an in silico gene expression analysis of the identified soybean flowering genes. Phylogenetic analyses of the gene families highlighted the evolutionary relationships among these candidates. Our study identified key flowering genes in soybean and indicates that the vernalisation and the ambient-temperature pathways seem to be the most variant in soybean. A comparison of the orthologue groups containing flowering genes indicated that, on average, each Arabidopsis flowering gene has 2-3 orthologous copies in soybean. Our analysis highlighted that the CDF3, VRN1, SVP, AP3 and PIF3 genes are paralogue-rich genes in soybean. Furthermore, the genome mapping of the soybean flowering genes showed that these genes are scattered randomly across the genome. A paralogue comparison indicated that the soybean genes comprising the largest orthologue group are clustered in a 1.4 Mb region on chromosome 16 of soybean. Furthermore, a comparison with the undomesticated soybean (Glycine soja) revealed that there are hundreds of SNPs that are associated with putative soybean flowering genes and that there are structural variants that may affect the genes of the light-signalling and ambient-temperature pathways in soybean. Our study provides a framework for the soybean flowering pathway and insights into the relationship and evolution of flowering genes between a short-day soybean and the long-day plant, Arabidopsis.
Project description:Day length has an important influence on flowering and growth habit in many plant species. In crops such as soybean, photoperiod sensitivity determines the geographical range over which a given cultivar can grow and flower. The soybean genome contains ~10 genes homologous to FT, a central regulator of flowering from Arabidopsis thaliana. However, the precise roles of these soybean FTs are not clearly. Here we show that one such gene, GmFT2b, promotes flowering under long-days (LDs). Overexpression of GmFT2b upregulates expression of flowering-related genes which are important in regulating flowering time. We propose a 'weight' model for soybean flowering under short-day (SD) and LD conditions. Furthermore, we examine GmFT2b sequences in 195 soybean cultivars, as well as flowering phenotypes, geographical distributions and maturity groups. We found that Hap3, a major GmFT2b haplotype, is associated with significantly earlier flowering at higher latitudes. We anticipate our assay to provide important resources for the genetic improvement of soybean, including new germplasm for soybean breeding, and also increase our understanding of functional diversity in the soybean FT gene family.
Project description:Single-stranded non-protein coding small RNAs, 18-25 nucleotides in length, are ubiquitous throughout plants genomes and are involved in post-transcriptional gene regulation. Several types of DNA markers have been reported for the detection of genetic diversity or sequence variation in soybean, one of the most important legume crops in worldwide for seed protein and oil content. Recently, with the available of public genomic databases, there has been a shift from the labor-intensive development of PCR-based markers to sequence-based genotyping and the development of functional markers within genes, often coupled with the use of RNA information. But thus far miRNA-based markers have been only developed in rice and tobacco. Here we report the first functional molecular miRNA marker, miR1511-InDel, in soybean for a specific single copy locus used to assess genetic variation in domesticated soybean (Glycine max [L.] Merr) and its wild progenitor (Glycine soja Sieb. & Zucc.).We genotyped a total of 1,669 accessions of domesticated soybean (G. max) and its wild progenitor G. soja which are native throughout the China and parts of Korea, Japan and Russia. The results indicate that the miR1511 locus is distributed in cultivated soybean and has three alleles in annual wild soybean. Based on this result, we proposed that miR-InDel marker technology can be used to assess genetic variation. The inclusion of geo-reference data with miR1511-InDel marker data corroborated that accessions from the Yellow River basin (Huanghuai) exhibited high genetic diversity which provides more molecular evidence for gene diversity in annual wild soybean and domestication of soybean.These results provide evidence for the use of RNA marker, miRNA1511-InDel, as a soybean-specific functional maker for the study of genetic diversity, genotyping of germplasm and evolution studies. This is also the first report of functional marker developed from soybean miRNA located within the functional region of pre-miRNA1511.