Submitted to: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: February 1, 2000
Publication Date: N/A
Interpretive Summary: Many millions of dollars are invested in plant genetic research each year. If it would be possible to conduct the research on a limited number of plant species and then transfer the information to other species it would result in a huge savings of dollars and time. The authors took advantage of genetic data already in public databases to show that the genetic maps of chromosomes from soybean and from arabidopsis, two very different plants, could actually be lined up in many places. This makes it possible to take advantage of important genetic information gathered for either species without duplicating effort. This type of information sharing will result in the saving of millions of dollars necessary to duplicate research conducted in each species. Suprisingly, they also found that arabidopsis, a plant long thought to represent the simplest genetic systems, may actually be much more complex than once thought. This information is useful to public and private researchers conducting genomic research in plants.
Technical Abstract: Synteny between soybean and Arabidopsis was studied using conceptual translations of DNA sequences from loci which map to soybean linkage groups A2, J and L. Synteny was found between these linkage groups and all four of the Arabidopsis chromosomes where Genbank contained enough sequence for synteny to be confidently identified. Soybean linkage group A2 (soyA2) and Arabidopsis chromosome I showed significant synteny over almost their entire lengths, with only two to three chromosomal rearrangements required to bring the maps into substantial agreement. Smaller blocks of synteny were identified between soyA2 and Arabidopsis chromosomes IV and V (near the RPP5 and RPP8 genes) and between soyA2 and Arabidopsis chromosomes I and V (near the PhyA and PhyC genes). These subchromosomal syntenic regions were themselves homologous, suggesting that Arabidopsis has undergone a number of segmental duplications or possibly a complete genome duplication during its evolution. Homologies between the homologous soybean linkage groups J and L and Arabidopsis chromosomes II and IV also revealed evidence of segmental duplication in Arabidopsis. Further support for this hypothesis was provided by the observation of very close linkage in Arabidopsis of homologs of soybean Vsp27 and Bng181 (three locations) and purple acid phosphatase-like sequences and homologs of soybean A256 (six locations).