Genetical Research



Revealing constitutively expressed resistance genes in Agrostis species using PCR-based motif-directed RNA fingerprinting


HIKMET BUDAK a1c1, SENEM SU a1 and NESLIHAN ERGEN a1
a1 Biological Science and Bioengineering Program, Faculty of Engineering and Natural Sciences, Sabanci University, Orhanli, 34956, Tuzla/Istanbul, Turkey

Article author query
budak h   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
su s   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
ergen n   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 

Abstract

Agrostis species are mainly used in athletic fields and golf courses. Their integrity is maintained by fungicides, which makes the development of disease-resistance varieties a high priority. However, there is a lack of knowledge about resistance (R) genes and their use for genetic improvement in Agrostis species. The objective of this study was to identify and clone constitutively expressed cDNAs encoding R gene-like (RGL) sequences from three Agrostis species (colonial bentgrass (A. capillaris L.), creeping bentgrass (A. stolonifera L.) and velvet bentgrass (A. canina L.)) by PCR-based motif-directed RNA fingerprinting towards relatively conserved nucleotide binding site (NBS) domains. Sixty-one constitutively expressed cDNA sequences were identified and characterized. Sequence analysis of ESTs and probable translation products revealed that RGLs are highly conserved among these three Agrostis species. Fifteen of them were shown to share conserved motifs found in other plant disease resistance genes such as MLA13, Xa1, YR6, YR23 and RPP5. The molecular evolutionary forces, analysed using the Ka/Ks ratio, reflected purifying selection both on NBS and leucine-rich repeat (LRR) intervening regions of discovered RGL sequences in these species. This study presents, for the first time, isolation and characterization of constitutively expressed RGL sequences from Agrostis species revealing the presence of TNL (TIR-NBS-LRR) type R genes in monocot plants. The characterized RGLs will further enhance knowledge on the molecular evolution of the R gene family in grasses.

(Received November 2 2006)
(Revised January 11 2007)


Correspondence:
c1 Telephone: +90 216 4839575. Fax: +90 216 4839550. e-mail: budak@sabanciuniv.edu


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