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Manipulating assimilate availability provides insight into the genes controlling grain size in sorghum

Tao, Y., Trusov, Y., Zhao, X., Wang, X., Cruickshank, A. W., Hunt, C. H., van Oosterom, E. J., Hathorn, A., Liu, G., Ian, G. D., Botella, J. R., Mace, E. S. and Jordan, D. R. (2021) Manipulating assimilate availability provides insight into the genes controlling grain size in sorghum. The Plant Journal, n/a (n/a). ISSN 0960-7412

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Article Link(s): https://doi.org/10.1111/tpj.15437

Publisher URL: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/tpj.15437

Abstract

Abstract Variation in grain size, a major determinant of grain yield and quality in cereal crops, is determined by both the plant’s genetic potential and the available assimilate to fill the grain in the absence of stress. This study investigated grain size variation in response to variation in assimilate supply in sorghum using a diversity panel (n=837) and a BC-NAM population (n=1,421) across four experiments. To explore the effects of genetic potential and assimilate availability on grain size, the top half of selected panicles was removed at anthesis. Results showed substantial variation in five grain size parameters with high heritability. Artificial reduction in grain number resulted in a general increase in grain weight, with the extent of the increase varying across genotypes. Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) identified 44 grain size QTL that were likely to act on assimilate availability and 50 QTL that were likely to act on genetic potential. This finding was further supported by functional enrichment analysis and co-location analysis with known grain number QTL and candidate genes. RNA interference (RNAi) and overexpression experiments were conducted to validate the function of one of the identified gene, SbDEP1, showing that SbDEP1 positively regulates grain number and negatively regulates grain size by controlling primary branching in sorghum. Haplotype analysis of SbDEP1 suggested a possible role in racial differentiation. The enhanced understanding of grain size variation in relation to assimilate availability presented in this study will benefit sorghum improvement and have implications for other cereal crops.

Item Type:Article
Business groups:Crop and Food Science
Keywords:sorghum grain size QTL genetic potential assimilate availability grain number crop improvement
Subjects:Science > Botany > Genetics
Agriculture > Agriculture (General) > Methods and systems of culture. Cropping systems
Plant culture > Field crops
Plant culture > Field crops > Sorghum
Deposited On:05 Aug 2021 02:06
Last Modified:03 Sep 2021 16:46

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