Sequencing and Analysis of the Sex Determination Region of Populus trichocarpa.
ABSTRACT: The ages and sizes of a sex-determination region (SDR) are difficult to determine in non-model species. Due to the lack of recombination and enrichment of repetitive elements in SDRs, the quality of assembly with short sequencing reads is universally low. Unique features present in the SDRs help provide clues about how SDRs are established and how they evolve in the absence of recombination. Several Populus species have been reported with a male heterogametic configuration of sex (XX/XY system) mapped on chromosome 19, but the exact location of the SDR has been inconsistent among species, and thus far, none of these SDRs has been fully assembled in a genomic context. Here we identify the Y-SDR from a Y-linked contig directly from a long-read PacBio assembly of a Populus trichocarpa male individual. We also identified homologous gene sequences in the SDR of P. trichocarpa and the SDR of the W chromosome in Salix purpurea. We show that inverted repeats (IRs) found in the Y-SDR and the W-SDR are lineage-specific. We hypothesize that, although the two IRs are derived from the same orthologous gene within each species, they likely have independent evolutionary histories. Furthermore, the truncated inverted repeats in P. trichocarpa may code for small RNAs that target the homologous gene for RNA-directed DNA methylation. These findings support the hypothesis that diverse sex-determining systems may be achieved through similar evolutionary pathways, thereby providing a possible mechanism to explain the lability of sex-determination systems in plants in general.
Project description:BACKGROUND:It is hypothesized that the highly conserved inverted repeats (IR) structure of land plant plastid genomes (plastomes) is beneficial for stabilizing plastome organization, whereas the mechanism of the occurrence and stability maintenance of the recently reported direct repeats (DR) structure is yet awaiting further exploration. Here we describe the DR structure of the Selaginella vardei (Selaginellaceae) plastome, to elucidate the mechanism of DR occurrence and stability maintenance. RESULTS:The plastome of S. vardei is 121,254 bp in length and encodes 76 genes, of which 62 encode proteins, 10 encode tRNAs, and four encode rRNAs. Unexpectedly, the two identical rRNA gene regions (13,893 bp) are arranged in a direct orientation (DR), rather than inverted. Comparing to the IR organization in Isoetes flaccida (Isoetaceae, Lycopodiopsida) plastome, a ca. 50-kb trnN-trnF inversion that spans one DR copy was found in the plastome of S. vardei, which might cause the orientation change. In addition, we find extremely rare short dispersed repeats (SDRs) in the plastomes of S. vardei and its closely related species S. indica. CONCLUSIONS:We suggest that the ca. 50-kb inversion resulted in the DR structure, and the reduction in SDRs plays a key role in maintaining the stability of plastomes with DR structure by avoiding potential secondary recombination. We further confirmed the presence of homologous recombination between DR regions, which are able to generate subgenomes and form diverse multimers. Our study deepens the understanding of Selaginella plastomes and provides new insights into the diverse plastome structures in land plants.
Project description:The complete chloroplast genome sequence of <i>Populus davidiana</i> Dode was determined in this study. The cpDNA was 155,853?bp in length, containing a pair of inverted repeats (IRs) of 27,571?bp each separated by a large and small single copy (LSC and SSC) regions of 84,127?bp and 16,584?bp, respectively. The cpDNA contained 130 genes, including 85 protein-coding genes, 8 ribosomal RNA genes and 37 transfer RNA genes. Phylogenetic analysis indicated <i>P. davidiana</i> was mostly close to <i>Populus tremula</i>, widely distributed in Europe and <i>Populus tremula?×?alba</i>.
Project description:Males of all species of the parasitic wasp genus Nasonia use (4R,5S)-5-hydroxy-4-decanolide (RS) as component of their sex pheromone while only N. vitripennis (Nv), employs additionally (4R,5R)-5-hydroxy-4-decanolide (RR). Three genes coding for the NAD(+)-dependent short-chain dehydrogenases/reductases (SDRs) NV10127, NV10128, and NV10129 are linked to the ability of Nv to produce RR. Here we show by assaying recombinant enzymes that SDRs from both Nv and N. giraulti (Ng), the latter a species with only RS in the pheromone, epimerise RS into RR and vice versa with (4R)-5-oxo-4-decanolide as an intermediate. Nv-derived SDR orthologues generally had higher epimerisation rates, which were also influenced by NAD(+) availability. Semiquantitative protein analyses of the pheromone glands by tandem mass spectrometry revealed that NV10127 as well as NV10128 and/or NV10129 were more abundant in Nv compared to Ng. We conclude that the interplay of differential expression patterns and SDR epimerisation rates on the ancestral pheromone component RS accounts for the evolution of a novel pheromone phenotype in Nv.
Project description:miR1444s are functionally significant miRNAs targeting polyphenol oxidase (PPO) genes for cleavage. MIR1444 genes were reported only in Populus trichocarpa. Through the computational analysis of 215 RNA-seq data, four whole genome sequences of Salicaceae species and deep sequencing of six P. trichocarpa small RNA libraries, we investigated the origin and evolution history of MIR1444s. A total of 23 MIR1444s were identified. Populus and Idesia species contain two MIR1444 genes, while Salix includes only one. Populus and Idesia MIR1444b genes and Salix MIR1444s were phylogenetically separated from Populus and Idesia MIR1444a genes. Ptr-miR1444a and ptr-miR1444b showed sequence divergence. Compared with ptr-miR1444b, ptr-miR1444a started 2?nt upstream of precursor, resulting in differential regulation of PPO targets. Sequence alignments showed that MIR1444 genes exhibited extensive similarity to their PPO targets, the characteristics of MIRs originated from targets through an inverted gene duplication event. Genome sequence comparison showed that MIR1444 genes in Populus and Idesia were expanded through the Salicoid genome duplication event. A copy of MIR1444 gene was lost in Salix through DNA segment deletion during chromosome rearrangements. The results provide significant information for the origin of plant miRNAs and the mechanism of Salicaceae gene evolution and divergence.
Project description:Recombination in ancient, heteromorphic sex chromosomes is typically suppressed at the sex-determining region (SDR) and proportionally elevated in the pseudoautosomal region (PAR). However, little is known about recombination dynamics of young, homomorphic plant sex chromosomes. We examine male and female function in crosses and unrelated samples of the dioecious octoploid strawberry Fragaria chiloensis in order to map the small and recently evolved SDR controlling both traits and to examine recombination patterns on the incipient ZW chromosome. The SDR of this ZW system is located within a 280 kb window, in which the maternal recombination rate is lower than the paternal one. In contrast to the SDR, the maternal PAR recombination rate is much higher than the rates of the paternal PAR or autosomes, culminating in an elevated chromosome-wide rate. W-specific divergence is elevated within the SDR and a single polymorphism is observed in high species-wide linkage disequilibrium with sex. Selection for recombination suppression within the small SDR may be weak, but fluctuating sex ratios could favor elevated recombination in the PAR to remove deleterious mutations on the W. The recombination dynamics of this nascent sex chromosome with a modestly diverged SDR may be typical of other dioecious plants.
Project description:Salmonids present an excellent model for studying evolution of young sex-chromosomes. Within the genus, Oncorhynchus, at least six independent sex-chromosome pairs have evolved, many unique to individual species. This variation results from the movement of the sex-determining gene, sdY, throughout the salmonid genome. While sdY is known to define sexual differentiation in salmonids, the mechanism of its movement throughout the genome has remained elusive due to high frequencies of repetitive elements, rDNA sequences, and transposons surrounding the sex-determining regions (SDR). Despite these difficulties, bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) library clones from both rainbow trout and Atlantic salmon containing the sdY region have been reported. Here, we report the sequences for these BACs as well as the extended sequence for the known SDR in Chinook gained through genome walking methods. Comparative analysis allowed us to study the overlapping SDRs from three unique salmonid Y chromosomes to define the specific content, size, and variation present between the species. We found approximately 4.1 kb of orthologous sequence common to all three species, which contains the genetic content necessary for masculinization. The regions contain transposable elements that may be responsible for the translocations of the SDR throughout salmonid genomes and we examine potential mechanistic roles of each one.
Project description:The diversity of inflorescences among flowering plants is captivating. Such charm is not only due to the variety of sizes, shapes, colors, and flowers displayed, but also to the range of reproductive systems. For instance, hermaphrodites occur abundantly throughout the plant kingdom with both stamens and carpels within the same flower. Nevertheless, 10% of flowering plants have separate unisexual flowers, either in different locations of the same individual (monoecy) or on different individuals (dioecy). Despite their rarity, dioecious plants provide an excellent opportunity to investigate the mechanisms involved in sex expression and the evolution of sex-determining regions (SDRs) and sex chromosomes. The SDRs and the evolution of dioecy have been studied in many species ranging from Ginkgo to important fruit crops. Some of these studies, for example in asparagus or kiwifruit, identified two sex-determining genes within the non-recombining SDR and may thus be consistent with the classical model for the evolution of dioecy from hermaphroditism via gynodioecy, that predicts two successive mutations, the first one affecting male and the second one female function, becoming linked in a region of suppressed recombination. On the other hand, aided by genome sequencing and gene editing, single factor sex determination has emerged in other species, such as persimmon or poplar. Despite the diversity of sex-determining mechanisms, a tentative comparative analysis of the known sex-determining genes and candidates in different species suggests that similar genes and pathways may be employed repeatedly for the evolution of dioecy. The cytokinin signaling pathway appears important for sex determination in several species regardless of the underlying genetic system. Additionally, tapetum-related genes often seem to act as male-promoting factors when sex is determined via two genes. We present a unified model that synthesizes the genetic networks of sex determination in monoecious and dioecious plants and will support the generation of hypothesis regarding candidate sex determinants in future studies.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Long-term evolution of sex chromosomes is a dynamic process shaped by gene gain and gene loss. Sex chromosome gene traffic has been studied in XY and ZW systems but no detailed analyses have been carried out for haploid phase UV sex chromosomes. Here, we explore sex-specific sequences of seven brown algal species to understand the dynamics of the sex-determining region (SDR) gene content across 100 million years of evolution.<h4>Results</h4>A core set of sex-linked genes is conserved across all the species investigated, but we also identify modifications of both the U and the V SDRs that occurred in a lineage-specific fashion. These modifications involve gene loss, gene gain and relocation of genes from the SDR to autosomes. Evolutionary analyses suggest that the SDR genes are evolving rapidly and that this is due to relaxed purifying selection. Expression analysis indicates that genes that were acquired from the autosomes have been retained in the SDR because they confer a sex-specific role in reproduction. By examining retroposed genes in Saccharina japonica, we demonstrate that UV sex chromosomes have generated a disproportionate number of functional orphan retrogenes compared with autosomes. Movement of genes out of the UV sex chromosome could be a means to compensate for gene loss from the non-recombining region, as has been suggested for Y-derived retrogenes in XY sexual systems.<h4>Conclusion</h4>This study provides the first analysis of gene traffic in a haploid UV system and identifies several features of general relevance to the evolution of sex chromosomes.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Short-chain dehydrogenases/reductases (SDRs) form one of the largest and oldest NAD(P)(H) dependent oxidoreductase families. Despite a conserved 'Rossmann-fold' structure, members of the SDR superfamily exhibit low sequence similarities, which constituted a bottleneck in terms of identification. Recent classification methods, relying on hidden-Markov models (HMMs), improved identification and enabled the construction of a nomenclature. However, functional annotations of plant SDRs remain scarce. RESULTS: Wide-scale analyses were performed on ten plant genomes. The combination of hidden Markov model (HMM) based analyses and similarity searches led to the construction of an exhaustive inventory of plant SDR. With 68 to 315 members found in each analysed genome, the inventory confirmed the over-representation of SDRs in plants compared to animals, fungi and prokaryotes. The plant SDRs were first classified into three major types - 'classical', 'extended' and 'divergent' - but a minority (10% of the predicted SDRs) could not be classified into these general types ('unknown' or 'atypical' types). In a second step, we could categorize the vast majority of land plant SDRs into a set of 49 families. Out of these 49 families, 35 appeared early during evolution since they are commonly found through all the Green Lineage. Yet, some SDR families - tropinone reductase-like proteins (SDR65C), 'ABA2-like'-NAD dehydrogenase (SDR110C), 'salutaridine/menthone-reductase-like' proteins (SDR114C), 'dihydroflavonol 4-reductase'-like proteins (SDR108E) and 'isoflavone-reductase-like' (SDR460A) proteins - have undergone significant functional diversification within vascular plants since they diverged from Bryophytes. Interestingly, these diversified families are either involved in the secondary metabolism routes (terpenoids, alkaloids, phenolics) or participate in developmental processes (hormone biosynthesis or catabolism, flower development), in opposition to SDR families involved in primary metabolism which are poorly diversified. CONCLUSION: The application of HMMs to plant genomes enabled us to identify 49 families that encompass all Angiosperms ('higher plants') SDRs, each family being sufficiently conserved to enable simpler analyses based only on overall sequence similarity. The multiplicity of SDRs in plant kingdom is mainly explained by the diversification of large families involved in different secondary metabolism pathways, suggesting that the chemical diversification that accompanied the emergence of vascular plants acted as a driving force for SDR evolution.
Project description:The complete chloroplast genome of <i>Populus wilsonii</i> was reconstructed by reference-based assembly using whole-genome sequencing data. The total chloroplast genome size of <i>P. wilsonii</i> was 158,080?bp in length, including a pair of inverted repeat regions (IRs) of 27,749?bp each, a large single-copy region (LSC) of 85,949?bp and a small single-copy region (SSC) of 16,633?bp. A total of 133 genes were predicted from the chloroplast genome, including 86 protein-coding genes, 39 tRNA genes and eight rRNA genes. Among these genes, 20 genes occurred in IRs, containing nine protein-coding genes, seven tRNA genes and four rRNA genes. The GC content of <i>P. wilsonii</i> chloroplast genome was 36.6%. The phylogenetic analysis with 15 other species showed that <i>P. wilsonii</i> was closely clustered with <i>Populus cathayana</i>. The complete chloroplast genome of <i>P. wilsonii</i> provides new insights into <i>Populus</i> evolutionary and genomic studies.