Molecular and functional characterization of Brassica brevipedicellus orthologs involved in inflorescence architecture
Dumonceaux, T., Venglat, S.P., Kushalappa, K., Selvaraj, G., Datla, R. (2009). Molecular and functional characterization of Brassica brevipedicellus orthologs involved in inflorescence architecture, 87(6), 604-615. http://dx.doi.org/10.1139/B09-026
The diversity of inflorescence architecture in angiosperms relates to attracting pollinators and allowing the effective dispersal of seeds. Molecular understanding of the genetic factors regulating inflorescence architecture from the model system of Arabidopsis could provide critical insights for addressing this developmental process/pathway in a closely related crop species like Brassica napus L. Towards this objective, we have isolated and characterized the orthologs of the homeobox gene BREVIPEDICELLUS (BP) in three Brassica species, B. napus (BnBP), Brassica rapa L. (BrBP), and Brassica oleracea L. (BoBP). These Brassica orthologs show a high degree of conservation at the nucleotide and amino acid level, including the homeodomain and the intron positions. The B. napus ortholog complemented the Arabidopsis bp null allele and overexpression of BnBP in B. napus transgenic lines resulted in altered leaf phenotypes. Together, these results suggest that Brassica BP genes are functional orthologs of Arabidopsis BP. Ectopic expression of AS2, a negative regulator of BP encoding a LOB domain transcription factor, in transgenic B. napus produced compact inflorescence architecture reminiscent of the loss-of-function bp mutant phenotype described previously in Arabidopsis. These results provide evidence in support of BP as a potential target gene for modifying inflorescence architecture in Brassica crop species.
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