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

Xie, Quan, Li, Na, Yang, Yang, Lv, Yulong, Yao, Hongni, Wei, Rong, 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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