Project description:The heritability of gene expression is critical in understanding heterosis and is dependent on allele-specific regulation by local and remote factors in the genome. We used RNA-Seq to test whether variation in gene expression among F1 and F2 intraspecific Salix purpurea progeny is attributable to cis- and trans-regulatory divergence. We assessed the mode of inheritance based on gene expression levels and allele-specific expression for F1 and F2 intraspecific progeny in two distinct tissue types: shoot tip and stem internode. In addition, we explored sexually dimorphic patterns of inheritance and regulatory divergence among F1 progeny individuals. We show that in S. purpurea intraspecific crosses, gene expression inheritance largely exhibits a maternal dominant pattern, regardless of tissue type or pedigree. A significantly greater number of cis- and trans-regulated genes coincided with upregulation of the maternal parent allele in the progeny, irrespective of the magnitude, whereas the paternal allele was higher expressed for genes showing cis?×?trans or compensatory regulation. Importantly, consistent with previous genetic mapping results for sex in shrub willow, we have delimited sex-biased gene expression to a 2?Mb pericentromeric region on S. purpurea chr15 and further refined the sex determination region. Altogether, our results offer insight into the inheritance of gene expression in S. purpurea as well as evidence of sexually dimorphic expression which may have contributed to the evolution of dioecy in Salix.
Project description:Plant mitochondrial (mt) genomes possess several complex features, including a variable size, a dynamic genome structure, and complicated patterns of gene loss and gain throughout evolutionary history. Studies of plant mt genomes can, therefore, provide unique insights into organelle evolution. We assembled the complete Salix purpurea L. mt genome by screening genomic sequence reads generated by a Roche-454 pyrosequencing platform. The pseudo-molecule obtained has a typical circular structure 598,970 bp long, with an overall GC content of 55.06%. The S. purpurea mt genome contains 52 genes: 31 protein-coding, 18 tRNAs, and three rRNAs. Eighteen tandem repeats and 404 microsatellites are distributed unevenly throughout the S. purpurea mt genome. A phylogenetic tree of 23 representative terrestrial plants strongly supports S. purpurea inclusion in the Malpighiales clade. Our analysis contributes toward understanding the organization and evolution of organelle genomes in Salicaceae species.
Project description:Arsenic (As) is a toxic element for plants and one of the most common anthropogenic pollutants found at contaminated sites. Despite its severe effects on plant metabolism, several species can accumulate substantial amounts of arsenic and endure the associated stress. However, the genetic mechanisms involved in arsenic tolerance remains obscure in many model plant species used for land decontamination (phytoremediation), including willows. The present study assesses the potential of Salix purpurea cv. 'Fish Creek' for arsenic phytoextraction and reveals the genetic responses behind arsenic tolerance, phytoextraction and metabolism. Four weeks of hydroponic exposure to 0, 5, 30 and 100 mg/L revealed that plants were able to tolerate up to 5 mg/L arsenic. Concentrations of 0 and 5 mg/L of arsenic treatment were then used to compare alterations in gene expression of roots, stems and leaves using RNA sequencing. Differential gene expression revealed transcripts encoding proteins putatively involved in entry of arsenic into the roots, storage in vacuoles and potential transport through the plant as well as primary and secondary (indirect) toxicity tolerance mechanisms. A major role for tannin as a compound used to relieve cellular toxicity is implicated as well as unexpected expression of the cadmium transporter CAX2, providing a potential means for internal arsenic mobility. These insights into the underpinning genetics of a successful phytoremediating species present novel opportunities for selection of dedicated arsenic tolerant crops as well as the potential to integrate such tolerances into a wider Salix ideotype alongside traits including biomass yield, biomass quality, low agricultural inputs and phytochemical production.
Project description:In this study, the genetic diversity and structure of 13 natural locations of Salix purpurea were determined with the use of AFLP (amplified length polymorphism), RAPD (randomly amplified polymorphic DNA) and ISSR (inter-simple sequence repeats). The genetic relationships between 91 examined S. purpurea genotypes were evaluated by analyses of molecular variance (AMOVA), principal coordinates analyses (PCoA) and UPGMA (unweighted pair group method with arithmetic mean) dendrograms for both single marker types and a combination of all marker systems. The locations were assigned to distinct regions and the analysis of AMOVA (analysis of molecular variance) revealed a high genetic diversity within locations. The genetic diversity between both regions and locations was relatively low, but typical for many woody plant species. The results noted for the analyzed marker types were generally comparable with few differences in the genetic relationships among S. purpurea locations. A combination of several marker systems could thus be ideally suited to understand genetic diversity patterns of the species. This study makes the first attempt to broaden our knowledge of the genetic parameters of the purple willow (S. purpurea) from natural location for research and several applications, inter alia breeding purposes.
Project description:BACKGROUND AND AIMS:Increasing energy demands and the necessity to reduce greenhouse gas emissions are key motivating factors driving the development of lignocellulosic crops as an alternative to non-renewable energy sources. The effects of global climate change will require a better understanding of the genetic basis of complex adaptive traits to breed more resilient bioenergy feedstocks, like willow (Salix spp.). Shrub willow is a sustainable and dedicated bioenergy crop, bred to be fast-growing and high-yielding on marginal land without competing with food crops. In a rapidly changing climate, genomic advances will be vital for the sustained improvement of willow and other non-model bioenergy crops. Here, joint genetic mapping was used to exploit genetic variation garnered from both recent and historical recombination events in S. purpurea. METHODS:A panel of North American naturalized S. purpurea accessions and full-sib F2S. purpurea population were genotyped and phenotyped for a suite of morphological, physiological, pest and disease resistance, and wood chemical composition traits, collected from multi-environment and multi-year replicated field trials. Controlling for population stratification and kinship in the association panel and spatial variation in the F2, a comprehensive mixed model analysis was used to dissect the complex genetic architecture and plasticity of these important traits. KEY RESULTS:Individually, genome-wide association (GWAS) models differed in terms of power, but the combined approach, which corrects for yearly and environmental co-factors across datasets, improved the overall detection and resolution of associated loci. Although there were few significant GWAS hits located within support intervals of QTL for corresponding traits in the F2, many large-effect QTL were identified, as well as QTL hotspots. CONCLUSIONS:This study provides the first comparison of linkage analysis and linkage disequilibrium mapping approaches in Salix, and highlights the complementarity and limits of these two methods for elucidating the genetic architecture of complex bioenergy-related traits of a woody perennial breeding programme.
Project description:The properties of the secondary cell wall (SCW) in willow largely determine the suitability of willow biomass feedstock for potential bioenergy and biofuel applications. SCW development has been little studied in willow and it is not known how willow compares with model species, particularly the closely related genus Populus. To address this and relate SCW synthesis to candidate genes in willow, a tractable bud culture-derived system was developed in Salix purpurea, and cell wall composition and RNA-Seq transcriptome were followed in stems during early development. A large increase in SCW deposition in the period 0-2 weeks after transfer to soil was characterised by a big increase in xylan content, but no change in the frequency of substitution of xylan with glucuronic acid, and increased abundance of putative transcripts for synthesis of SCW cellulose, xylan and lignin. Histochemical staining and immunolabeling revealed that increased deposition of lignin and xylan was associated with xylem, xylem fibre cells and phloem fibre cells. Transcripts orthologous to those encoding xylan synthase components IRX9 and IRX10 and xylan glucuronyl transferase GUX1 in Arabidopsis were co-expressed, and showed the same spatial pattern of expression revealed by in situ hybridisation at four developmental stages, with abundant expression in proto-xylem, xylem fibre and ray parenchyma cells and some expression in phloem fibre cells. The results show a close similarity with SCW development in Populus species, but also give novel information on the relationship between spatial and temporal variation in xylan-related transcripts and xylan composition.
Project description:Willow (Salix spp. L.) species are fast-growing trees and shrubs that have attracted emergent attention for their potential as feedstocks for bioenergy and biofuel production, as well as for pharmaceutical and phytoremediation applications. This economic and environmental potential has propelled the creation of several genetic and genomic resources for Salix spp. Furthermore, the recent availability of an annotated genome for Salix purpurea has pinpointed novel candidate genes underlying economically relevant traits. However, functional studies have been stalled by the lack of rapid and efficient coupled regeneration-transformation systems for Salix purpurea and Salix spp. in general. In this report, we describe a fast and highly efficient hairy root transformation protocol for S. purpurea. It was effective for different explant sources and S. purpurea genotypes, with efficiencies between 63.4% and 98.7%, and the screening of the transformed hairy roots was easily carried out using the fluorescent marker DsRed. To test the applicability of this hairy root transformation system for gene functional analysis, we transformed hairy roots with the vector pGWAY-SpDRM2, where the gene SpDRM2 encoding a putative Domain Rearranged Methyltransferase (DRM) was placed under the control of the CaMV 35S constitutive promoter. Indeed, the transgenic hairy roots obtained exhibited significantly increased expression of SpDRM2 as compared to controls, demonstrating that this protocol is suitable for the medium/high-throughput functional characterization of candidate genes in S. purpurea and other recalcitrant Salix spp.
Project description:The aim of this study was to investigate and to compare the extractability, bioaccessibility, and bioavailability in vitro of antioxidative compounds from bark of selected Salix species: S. alba (SA), S. daphnoides (SD), S. purpurea (SP), and S. daphnoides x purpurea (SDP) hybrid willow clones originating from their natural habitats and cultivated on the sandy soil. The highest amount of phenolic glycosides was found in the bark of SDP and SD. The best source of phenolics was bark of SDP. The highest content of flavonoids were found in SD bark samples, whereas the highest concentration of bioaccessible and bioavailable phenolic acids was determined in SDP bark. Bark of all tested Salix species showed significant antiradical activity. This properties are strongly dependent on extraction system and genetic factors. Regardless of Salix genotypes, the lowest chelating power was found for chemically-extractable compounds. Bark of all Salix species contained ethanol-extractable compounds with reducing ability. Besides this, high bioaccessibility and bioavailability in vitro of Salix bark phytochemicals were found. Obtained results indicate that extracts from bark tested Salix genotypes can provide health promoting benefits to the consumers; however, this problem requires further study.