Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search

 

Kiwifruit genes validate plant evolutionary theory

6 August 2019


Identification of kiwifruit sex determining genes validates plant evolutionary theory


An international research team has discovered a sex determining gene in kiwifruit that could potentially lead to the breeding of hermaphrodite varieties. The study has also validated the “two-mutation model” in sex acquisition of plants proposed 40 years ago.

Plant & Food Research scientists and their research partners in Japan and the US have identified a gene called Friendly Boy (FrBy), which is necessary for pollen production and is found naturally in Y chromosomes of male kiwifruit plants. It is the second sex-determinant discovered in kiwifruit after Shy Girl (SyGI), which suppresses fruit production in male kiwifruit plants.

“We overexpressed the FrBy gene identified by our Japanese research partner in rapid-flowering kiwifruit plants,” Plant & Food Research scientist Dr Sarah Pilkington says. “We found that expression of FrBy in female kiwifruit resulted in hermaphrodite plants, which means the female plants could both produce and receive pollen, making them capable of self-fertilisation.”

The study supports the “two-mutation model” of sex evolution in plants proposed by Deborah and Brian Charlesworth in 1978. It suggests that at least two gene mutations, one affecting ovule (female) production and one affecting pollen (male) production, are necessary to transform a hermaphrodite species into one with separate sexes.

The results of this study pave the way for the potential development of hermaphrodite kiwifruit. Self-fertile kiwifruit cultivars could remove the current need for pollen supplementation, saving land and labour costs.

The paper “Two Y chromosome-encoded genes determine sex in kiwifruit” is published in the top plant journal Nature Plants https://plantandfood.us5.list-manage.com/track/click?u=1b46d14e528ad30bae8b3663c&id=e26db8a814&e=5b367992d8.


ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Reserve Bank: RBNZ To Implement $30bn Large Scale Asset Purchase Programme Of NZ Govt Bonds

The Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) has decided to implement a Large Scale Asset Purchase programme (LSAP) of New Zealand government bonds. The negative economic implications of the coronavirus outbreak have continued to intensify. The Committee ... More>>

ALSO:

Elevate NZ: Venture Fund To Lift Productivity

The Government’s new $300 million venture capital fund - announced in last year’s Budget – is now open for business as the Elevate NZ Venture Fund. Finance Minister Grant Robertson says lifting New Zealand's productivity requires well-functioning ... More>>

ALSO:


COVID-19: Case Confirmed In NZ – Expert Reaction

After spreading across the globe for months, the first case of COVID-19 has been reported in New Zealand. The Ministry of Health says the risk of a community outbreak is low, due to their preparedness and the high awareness of the disease. The Science ... More>>

ALSO:

Agriculture: New Legislation To Boost Organics

New organics legislation will boost consumer confidence and help grow an innovative sector, says Food Safety Minister Damien O’Connor. “The Organics Product Bill, introduced to Parliament this week, aims to increase consumer confidence when purchasing ... More>>

ALSO:

Biodiversity Policy: Misinformation Circulating

Forest & Bird is concerned at misinformation circulating regarding a policy statement aimed at protecting New Zealand’s unique biodiversity. The National Policy Statement for Indigenous Biodiversity is being consulted on by the ... More>>

ALSO: