What is it about?

Distyly is a genetically controlled flower polymorphism that has intrigued scientists ever since Darwin’s time. Despite extensive reports on the pollination and evolution of distylous systems, the genetic basis and mechanism of molecular regulation remain unclear. We performed comparative transcriptome profiling in primrose (Primula oreodoxa) . Thirty-six transcriptomes were sequenced for styles at different stages and corolla tube in the three morphs of P. oreodoxa.

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Why is it important?

We detected numbers of differentially expressed genes relating to phytohormone metabolism. Analysis of co-expression networks and module-trait relationships identified modules significantly associated with style development.These findings suggested the genetic control of distyly may be more complicated than ever expected. CYP734A50, a key S-locus gene whose products degrade brassinosteroids, was co-expressed with many genes in the module and showed significant negative association with style length. In addition, crucial TFs involved in phytohormone signaling pathways were found to be connected with CYP734A50 in the coexpression module.


This global transcriptomic analysis has identified DEGs that are potentially involved in regulation of style length in P. oreodoxa, and may shed light on the evolution and broad biological processes of heterostyly.

Dr. Zhong-Lai Luo
South China Botanical Garden, The Chinese Academy of Sciences

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This page is a summary of: Global transcriptome and gene co-expression network analyses on the development of distyly in Primula oreodoxa, Heredity, July 2019, Springer Science + Business Media,
DOI: 10.1038/s41437-019-0250-y.
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