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Maternal environment affects the genetic basis of seed dormancy in Arabidopsis thaliana
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Biology, Department of Ecology and Genetics, Plant Ecology and Evolution.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Biology, Department of Ecology and Genetics, Plant Ecology and Evolution.
2015 (English)In: Molecular Ecology, ISSN 0962-1083, E-ISSN 1365-294X, Vol. 24, no 4, 785-797 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The genetic basis of seed dormancy, a key life history trait important for adaptive evolution in plant populations, has yet been studied only using seeds produced under controlled conditions in greenhouse environments. However, dormancy is strongly affected by maternal environmental conditions, and interactions between seed genotype and maternal environment have been reported. Consequently, the genetic basis of dormancy of seeds produced under natural field conditions remains unclear. We examined the effect of maternal environment on the genetic architecture of seed dormancy using a recombinant inbred line (RIL) population derived from a cross between two locally adapted populations of Arabidopsis thaliana from Italy and Sweden. We mapped quantitative trait loci (QTL) for dormancy of seeds produced in the greenhouse and at the native field sites of the parental genotypes. The Italian genotype produced seeds with stronger dormancy at fruit maturation than did the Swedish genotype in all three environments, and the maternal field environments induced higher dormancy levels compared to the greenhouse environment in both genotypes. Across the three maternal environments, a total of nine dormancy QTL were detected, three of which were only detected among seeds matured in the field, and six of which showed significant QTLxmaternal environment interactions. One QTL had a large effect on dormancy across all three environments and colocalized with the candidate gene DOG1. Our results demonstrate the importance of studying the genetic basis of putatively adaptive traits under relevant conditions.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 24, no 4, 785-797 p.
Keyword [en]
adaptation, Arabidopsis thaliana, genotype-by-environment interactions, maternal effects, quantitative trait loci mapping, seed dormancy
National Category
Ecology Evolutionary Biology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-248202DOI: 10.1111/mec.13061ISI: 000349819300008PubMedID: 25640699OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-248202DiVA: diva2:799510
Available from: 2015-03-31 Created: 2015-03-30 Last updated: 2017-12-04Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Selection during Early Life Stages and Local Adaptation in Arabidopsis thaliana
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Selection during Early Life Stages and Local Adaptation in Arabidopsis thaliana
2016 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Organisms are often adapted to their local environment, but the role of early life stages in adaptive differentiation among populations remains poorly known. The aim of my thesis was to investigate the contribution of early life stages to the magnitude and genetic basis of local adaptation, and to identify the underlying adaptive traits. For this, I used two natural populations of the annual plant Arabidopsis thaliana from Italy and Sweden, and a Recombinant Inbred Line (RIL) population derived from a cross between these populations. By combining greenhouse and field experiments, Quantitative Trait Loci (QTL) mapping, and path analysis, I examined (1) the genetic basis of seed dormancy, (2) the contribution of differential seedling establishment to local adaptation, (3) among-year variation in selection during seedling establishment, (4) direct and indirect effects of seed dormancy and timing of germination on fitness, and (5) the adaptive value of the seed bank.

I found that both the level and the genetic basis of seed dormancy were affected by the maternal environment. One major-effect QTL was identified in all maternal environments, which overlaps with the dormancy gene DELAY OF GERMINATION 1 (DOG1).

Selection through seedling establishment success contributed strongly to local adaptation and genetic tradeoffs, and varied among years. Variation in seedling establishment and overall fitness among RILs could be explained by genetically based differences in seed dormancy and timing of germination. Seed dormancy affected fitness throughout the life cycle, by affecting the proportion of germinated seeds, and indirectly via effects on timing of germination, plant size and flowering time.

My results suggest that a considerable portion of A. thaliana seeds enter the seed bank. I found genetic differences in dormancy cycling behaviour between the two populations, which could contribute to local adaptation. The value of a seed bank should be higher at the Swedish study site than at the Italian study site due to lower rate of seed mortality in the soil.

Overall, the results of this thesis demonstrate that early life stages contribute strongly to both the magnitude and the genetics of local adaptation.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis, 2016. 51 p.
Series
Digital Comprehensive Summaries of Uppsala Dissertations from the Faculty of Science and Technology, ISSN 1651-6214 ; 1425
Keyword
Dormancy cycling, Germination timing, Maternal effects, Natural variation, QTL mapping, Seed bank, Seed dormancy, Structural Equation Modeling
National Category
Evolutionary Biology Ecology Botany
Research subject
Biology with specialization in Ecological Botany
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-302862 (URN)978-91-554-9687-6 (ISBN)
Public defence
2016-10-28, Zootissalen, Villavägen 9, Uppsala, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2016-10-05 Created: 2016-09-12 Last updated: 2016-10-11

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Postma, Froukje M.Ågren, Jon

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