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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Logan, Utah » Forage and Range Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #321857

Research Project: Develop Improved Plant Genetic Resources to Enhance Pasture and Rangeland Productivity in the Semiarid Regions of the Western U.S.

Location: Forage and Range Research

Title: Transcriptome profiling of Kentucky bluegrass (Poa pratensis L.) accessions in response to salt stress

Author
item Bushman, Shaun
item AMUNDSEN, KEENAN - University Of Nebraska
item Warnke, Scott
item Robins, Joseph
item JOHNSON, PAUL - Utah State University

Submitted to: BMC Genomics
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/6/2016
Publication Date: 1/13/2016
Citation: Bushman, B.S., Amundsen, K.L., Warnke, S.E., Robins, J.G., Johnson, P.G. 2016. Transcriptome profiling of Kentucky bluegrass (Poa pratensis L.) accessions in response to salt stress. BMC Genomics. 17:48. doi: 10.1186/s12864-016-2379-x.

Interpretive Summary: With increasing water restrictions, many turf users such as golf course managers, park managers, and homeowners, are increasingly using poorer quality water with higher salt content to irrigate their lawns. One example of this is the increased use of secondary or effluent water for landscape purposes. Unfortunately, Kentucky bluegrass, a main cool season turf, is not very salt tolerant. We previously found a source of Kentucky bluegrass that was more tolerant of salt stress than other varieties, and we compare the expression of genes in this salt tolerant source with a very salt-susceptible source. We made these comparisons in shoot and root tissues separately to gain insights into the different genes expressed in the tolerant source upon salt stress. We found thousands of expressed genes, but oly several hundred had expression profiles that indicated they might contribute to salt tolerance. Among those several hundred were genes involved in large scale regulation of gene pathways, water and sodium transport, and in cell damage and repair. Roots tended to have a few genes expresed while shoots exhibitied many more. These results will provide genes that are candidates for further characterization, which will lead to their use in DNA marker assisted selection of superior salt-tolerant Kentucky bluegrass by turfgrass breeders.

Technical Abstract: With increasing water restrictions, many turf users such as golf course managers, park managers, and homeowners, are increasingly using poorer quality water with higher salt content to irrigate their lawns. One example of this is the increased use of secondary or effluent water for landscape purposes. Unfortunately, Kentucky bluegrass, a main cool season turf, is not very salt tolerant. We previously found a source of Kentucky bluegrass that was more tolerant of salt stress than other varieties, and we compare the expression of genes in this salt tolerant source with a very salt-susceptible source. We made these comparisons in shoot and root tissues separately to gain insights into the different genes expressed in the tolerant source upon salt stress. We found thousands of expressed genes, but only several hundred had expression profiles that indicated they might contribute to salt tolerance. Among those several hundred were genes involved in large scale regulation of gene pathways, water and sodium transport, and in cell damage and repair. Roots tended to have few genes expressed while shoots exhibitied many more. These results will provide genes that are candidates for further characterization, which will lead to their use in DNA marker assisted selection of superior salt-tolerant Kentucky bluegrass by turfgrass breeders.