The plasticity of NBS resistance genes in sorghum is driven by multiple evolutionary processes

Mace, Emma, Tai, Shuaishuai, Innes, David, Godwin, Ian, Hu, Wushu, Campbell, Bradley, Gilding, Edward, Cruickshank, Alan, Prentis, Peter, Wang, Jun and Jordan, David (2014) The plasticity of NBS resistance genes in sorghum is driven by multiple evolutionary processes. BMC Plant Biology, 14 1: 253.1-253.14. doi:10.1186/s12870-014-0253-z

Author Mace, Emma
Tai, Shuaishuai
Innes, David
Godwin, Ian
Hu, Wushu
Campbell, Bradley
Gilding, Edward
Cruickshank, Alan
Prentis, Peter
Wang, Jun
Jordan, David
Title The plasticity of NBS resistance genes in sorghum is driven by multiple evolutionary processes
Journal name BMC Plant Biology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1471-2229
Publication date 2014-09
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1186/s12870-014-0253-z
Open Access Status DOI
Volume 14
Issue 1
Start page 253.1
End page 253.14
Total pages 14
Place of publication London, United Kingdom
Publisher BioMed Central
Collection year 2015
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Background: Increased disease resistance is a key target of cereal breeding programs, with disease outbreaks continuing to threaten global food production, particularly in Africa. Of the disease resistance gene families, the nucleotide-binding site plus leucine-rich repeat (NBS-LRR) family is the most prevalent and ancient and is also one of the largest gene families known in plants. The sequence diversity in NBS-encoding genes was explored in sorghum, a critical food staple in Africa, with comparisons to rice and maize and with comparisons to fungal pathogen resistance QTL.

Results: In sorghum, NBS-encoding genes had significantly higher diversity in comparison to non NBS-encoding genes and were significantly enriched in regions of the genome under purifying and balancing selection, both through domestication and improvement. Ancestral genes, pre-dating species divergence, were more abundant in regions with signatures of selection than in regions not under selection. Sorghum NBS-encoding genes were also significantly enriched in the regions of the genome containing fungal pathogen disease resistance QTL; with the diversity of the NBS-encoding genes influenced by the type of co-locating biotic stress resistance QTL.

Conclusions: NBS-encoding genes are under strong selection pressure in sorghum, through the contrasting evolutionary processes of purifying and balancing selection. Such contrasting evolutionary processes have impacted ancestral genes more than species-specific genes. Fungal disease resistance hot-spots in the genome, with resistance against multiple pathogens, provides further insight into the mechanisms that cereals use in the “arms race” with rapidly evolving pathogens in addition to providing plant breeders with selection targets for fast-tracking the development of high performing varieties with more durable pathogen resistance.
Keyword Cereals
Disease resistance
NBS-LRR genes
Nucleotide-Binding Site
Quantitative Trait Loci
Genome-Wide Analysis
Bicolor L. Moench
Lrr Genes
Encoding Genes
Draft Sequence
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

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