Publications

TitleQuantitative trait loci associated with natural diversity in water-use efficiency and response to soil drying in Brachypodium distachyon.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year2016
AuthorsDes Marais DL, Razzaque S, Hernandez KM, Garvin DF, Juenger TE
JournalPlant Sci
Volume251
Pagination2-11
Date2016 Oct
ISSN1873-2259
KeywordsBrachypodium, Chromosome Mapping, Genetic Markers, Phenotype, Quantitative Trait Loci, Water
Abstract

All plants must optimize their growth with finite resources. Water use efficiency (WUE) measures the relationship between biomass acquisition and transpired water. In the present study, we performed two experiments to understand the genetic basis of WUE and other parameters of plant-water interaction under control and water-limited conditions. Our study used two inbred natural accessions of Brachypodium distachyon, a model grass species with close phylogenetic affinity to temperate forage and cereal crops. First, we identify the soil water content which causes a reduction in leaf relative water content and an increase in WUE. Second, we present results from a large phenotyping experiment utilizing a recombinant inbred line mapping population derived from these same two natural accessions. We identify QTLs associated with environmentally-insensitive genetic variation in WUE, including a pair of epistatically interacting loci. We also identify QTLs associated with constitutive differences in biomass and a QTL describing an environmentally-sensitive difference in leaf carbon content. Finally, we present a new linkage map for this mapping population based on new SNP markers as well as updated genomic positions for previously described markers. Our studies provide an initial characterization of plant-water relations in B. distachyon and identify candidate genomic regions involved in WUE.

DOI10.1016/j.plantsci.2016.03.010
Alternate JournalPlant Sci.
PubMed ID27593458
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    The primary focus of research in the Des Marais Lab is to understand the mechanisms of plant-environment interaction.

    We use tools from molecular, quantitative and population genetics to identify the physiological basis of plant response to environmental cues, and ask how these mechanisms constrain or facilitate plant breeding and evolutionary change.
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