3 years ago

Epigenetic differentiation of natural populations of Lilium bosniacum associated with contrasting habitat conditions.

S Siljak-Yakovlev, O Robin, F Bogunic, E Muratovic, V Zoldoš, F Pustahija, Z Šatovic, V Vicic Bockor, A Vojta, I Biruš
Epigenetic variation in natural populations with contrasting habitats might be an important element, in addition to the genetic variation, in plant adaptation to environmental stress. Here, we assessed genetic, epigenetic and cytogenetic structure of the three Lilium bosniacum populations growing on distinct habitats. One population was growing under habitual ecological conditions for this species and the other two were growing under stress associated with high altitude and serpentine soil. Amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) and methylation-sensitive amplification polymorphism (MSAP) analyses revealed that the three populations did not differentiate genetically, but were clearly separated in the three distinct clusters according to DNA methylation profiles. Principal coordinate analysis showed that overall epigenetic variation was closely related to habitat conditions. A new MSAP-scoring approach allowed identification of mainly unmethylated (ϕST = 0.190) and fully CpG methylated (ϕST = 0.118) subepiloci playing a role in overall population differentiation, in comparison with hemimethylated sites (ϕST = 0.073). In addition, unusual rDNA re-patterning, and the presence of B chromosomes bearing 5S rDNA loci, were recorded in the population growing on serpentine soil, suggesting dynamic chromosome rearrangements probably linked to global genome demethylation, which might have reactivated some mobile elements. We discuss our results considering our earlier data on morphology and leaf anatomy of several L. bosniacum populations, and suggest a possible role of epigenetics as a key element in population differentiation associated with environmental stress in these particular lily populations.

Publisher URL: http://doi.org/10.1093/gbe/evy010

DOI: 10.1093/gbe/evy010

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