3 years ago

Functional regulation of Q by microRNA172 and transcriptional co-repressor TOPLESS in controlling bread wheat spikelet density

Jiaqiang Sun, Huixue Dong, Jie Liu, Pan Liu
Bread wheat (Triticum aestivum) spike architecture is an important agronomic trait. The Q gene plays a key role in the domestication of bread wheat spike architecture. However, the regulatory mechanisms of Q expression and transcriptional activity remain largely unknown. In this study, we show that overexpression of bread wheat tae-miR172 caused a speltoid-like spike phenotype, reminiscent of that in wheat plants with the q gene. The reduction in Q transcript levels in the tae-miR172 overexpression transgenic bread wheat lines suggests that the Q expression can be suppressed by tae-miR172 in bread wheat. Indeed, our RACE analyses confirmed that the Q mRNA is targeted by tae-miR172 for cleavage. According to our analyses, the Q protein is localized in nucleus and confers transcriptional repression activity. Meanwhile, the Q protein could physically interact with the bread wheat transcriptional co-repressor TOPLESS (TaTPL). Specifically, the N-terminal ethylene-responsive element binding factor-associated amphiphilic repression (EAR) (LDLNVE) motif but not the C-terminal EAR (LDLDLR) motif of Q protein mediates its interaction with the CTLH motif of TaTPL. Moreover, we show that the N-terminal EAR motif of Q protein is also essentially required for the transcriptional repression activity of Q protein. Taken together, we reveal the functional regulation of Q protein by tae-miR172 and transcriptional co-repressor TaTPL in controlling the bread wheat spike architecture.

Publisher URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/resolve/doi

DOI: 10.1111/pbi.12790

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