A segment of the apospory-specific genomic region is highly microsyntenic not only between the apomicts Pennisetum squamulatum and buffelgrass, but also with a rice chromosome 11 centromeric-proximal genomic region. Academic Article uri icon


  • Bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) clones from apomicts Pennisetum squamulatum and buffelgrass (Cenchrus ciliaris), isolated with the apospory-specific genomic region (ASGR) marker ugt197, were assembled into contigs that were extended by chromosome walking. Gene-like sequences from contigs were identified by shotgun sequencing and BLAST searches, and used to isolate orthologous rice contigs. Additional gene-like sequences in the apomicts' contigs were identified by bioinformatics using fully sequenced BACs from orthologous rice contigs as templates, as well as by interspecies, whole-contig cross-hybridizations. Hierarchical contig orthology was rapidly assessed by constructing detailed long-range contig molecular maps showing the distribution of gene-like sequences and markers, and searching for microsyntenic patterns of sequence identity and spatial distribution within and across species contigs. We found microsynteny between P. squamulatum and buffelgrass contigs. Importantly, this approach also enabled us to isolate from within the rice (Oryza sativa) genome contig Rice A, which shows the highest microsynteny and is most orthologous to the ugt197-containing C1C buffelgrass contig. Contig Rice A belongs to the rice genome database contig 77 (according to the current September 12, 2003, rice fingerprint contig build) that maps proximal to the chromosome 11 centromere, a feature that interestingly correlates with the mapping of ASGR-linked BACs proximal to the centromere or centromere-like sequences. Thus, relatedness between these two orthologous contigs is supported both by their molecular microstructure and by their centromeric-proximal location. Our discoveries promote the use of a microsynteny-based positional-cloning approach using the rice genome as a template to aid in constructing the ASGR toward the isolation of genes underlying apospory.

published proceedings

  • Plant Physiol

author list (cited authors)

  • Gualtieri, G., Conner, J. A., Morishige, D. T., Moore, L. D., Mullet, J. E., & Ozias-Akins, P.

citation count

  • 22

complete list of authors

  • Gualtieri, Gustavo||Conner, Joann A||Morishige, Daryl T||Moore, L David||Mullet, John E||Ozias-Akins, Peggy

publication date

  • March 2006