DOI: 10.1101/460287Nov 2, 2018Paper

The Coordination and Jumps along C4 Photosynthesis Evolution in the Genus Flaveria

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
Ming-Ju Amy LyuXin-Guang Zhu


Background: C4 photosynthesis is a remarkable complex trait, elucidations of the evolutionary trajectory of C4 photosynthesis from its ancestral C3 pathway can help us to better understand the generic principles of complex trait evolution and guide engineering of C3 crops for higher yields. We used the genus Flaveria that contains C3, C3-C4, C4-like and C4 species as a system to study the evolution of C4 photosynthesis. Results: We mapped transcript abundance, protein sequence, and morphological features to the phylogenetic tree of the genus Flaveria, and calculated the evolutionary correlation of different features. Besides, we predicted the relative changes of ancestral nodes of those features to illustrate the key stages during the evolution of C4 photosynthesis. Gene expression and protein sequence showed consistent modification pattern along the phylogenetic tree. High correlation coefficients ranging from 0.46 to 0.9 among gene expression, protein sequence and morphology were observed, and the greatest modification of those different features consistently occurred at the transition between C3-C4 species and C4-like species. Conclusions: Our data shows highly coordinated changes in gene expression, protein sequence and mor...Continue Reading

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