Pleiotropic effects of the wheat domestication gene Q on yield and grain morphology

Xie, Quan and Li, Na and Yang, Yang and Lv, Yulong and Yao, Hongni and Wei, Rong and Sparkes, Debbie L. and Ma, Zhengqiang (2018) Pleiotropic effects of the wheat domestication gene Q on yield and grain morphology. Planta . ISSN 0032-0935

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Transformation from q to Q during wheat domestication functioned outside the boundary of threshability to increase yield, grains m−2, grain weight and roundness, but to reduce grains per spike/spikelet.

Mutation of the Q gene, well-known affecting wheat spike structure, represents a key domestication step in the formation of today’s free-threshing, economically important wheats. In a previous study, multiple yield components and spike characteristics were associated with the Q gene interval in the bread wheat ‘Forno’ × European spelt ‘Oberkulmer’ recombinant inbred line population. Here, we reported that this interval was also associated with grain yield, grains m−2, grain morphology, and spike dry weight at anthesis. To clarify the roles of Q in agronomic trait performance, a functional marker for the Q gene was developed. Analysis of allelic effects showed that the bread wheat Q allele conferred free-threshing habit, soft glumes, and short and compact spikes compared with q. In addition, the Q allele contributed to higher grain yield, more grains m−2, and higher thousand grain weight, whereas q contributed to more grains per spike/spikelet likely resulting from increased preanthesis spike growth. For grain morphology, the Q allele was associated with reduced ratio of grain length to height, indicating a rounder grain. These results are supported by analysis of four Q mutant lines in the Chinese Spring background. Therefore, the transition from q to Q during wheat domestication had profound effects on grain yield and grain shape evolution as well, being a consequence of pleiotropy.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This is a pre-print of an article published in Planta. The final authenticated version is available online at:
Schools/Departments: University of Nottingham, UK > Faculty of Science > School of Biosciences > Division of Plant and Crop Sciences
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Depositing User: Eprints, Support
Date Deposited: 23 Jan 2018 10:33
Last Modified: 04 May 2020 19:27

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