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MiR172 downregulates the translation of cleistogamy 1 in barley.

Ann. Bot. 122, 251-265 (2018)
Publishers Version online available 09/2019 as soon as is submitted to ZB.
Background and Aims Floret opening in barley is induced by the swelling of the lodicule, a trait under the control of the cleistogamy1 (cly1) gene. The product of cly1 is a member of the APETALA2 (AP2) transcription factor family, which inhibits lodicule development. A sequence polymorphism at the miR172 target site within cly1 has been associated with variation in lodicule development and hence with the cleistogamous phenotype. It was unclear whether miR172 actually functions in cly1 regulation and, if it does, which miR172 gene contributes to cleistogamy. It was also interesting to explore whether miR172-mediated cly1 regulation occurs at transcriptional level or at translational level. Methods Deep sequencing of small RNA identified the miR172 sequences expressed in barley immature spikes. miR172 genes were confirmed by computational and expression analysis. miR172 and cly1 expression profiles were determined by in situ hybridization and quantitative expression analysis. Immunoblot analysis provided the CLY1 protein quantifications. Definitive evidence of the role of miR172 in cleistogamy was provided by a transposon Ds-induced mutant of Hv-miR172a. Key Results A small RNA analysis of the immature barley spike revealed three isomers, miR172a, b and c, of which miR172a was the most abundant. In situ hybridization analysis showed that miR172 and cly1 co-localize in the lodicule primordium, suggesting that these two molecules potentially interact with one another. Immunoblot analysis showed that the sequence polymorphism at the miR172 target site within cly1 reduced the abundance of the CLY1 protein, but not that of its transcript. In a Ds-induced mutant of Hv-miR172a, which generates no mature miR172a, the lodicules fail to grow, resulting in a very small lodicule. Conclusions Direct evidence is presented to show that miR172a acts to reduce the abundance of the CLY1 protein, which enables open flowering in barley.
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Publication type Article: Journal article
Document type Scientific Article
Keywords Ap2 ; Cereals ; Lodicule ; Microrna ; Translation; Fusarium Head Blight; Domestication Gene-q; Flower Development; Computational Identification; Hordeum-vulgare; Plant Micrornas; Mirna Genes; Cell Fate; Arabidopsis; Expression
Reviewing status
Institute(s) Institute of Environmental Medicine (IEM)