Asif Ali,Tingkai Wu ,Zhengjun Xu,Asad Riaz,Ahmad M. Alqudah,Muhammad Zafar Iqbal,Hongyu Zhang,Yongxiang Liao,Xiaoqiong Chen,Yutong Liu,Tahir Mujtaba,Hao Zhou ,Wenming Wang,Peizhou Xu*,Xianjun Wu*
International Journal of Molecular Sciences（TOP,IF= 5.923）,2022, 23(14), 7887
Panicle degeneration, sometimes known as abortion, causes heavy losses in grain yield. However, the mechanism of naturally occurring panicle abortion is still elusive. In a previous study, we characterized a mutant, apical panicle abortion1331 (apa1331), exhibiting abortion in apical spikelets starting from the 6 cm stage of panicle development. In this study, we have quantified the five phytohormones, gibberellins (GA), auxins (IAA), abscisic acid (ABA), cytokinins (CTK), and brassinosteroids (BR), in the lower, middle, and upper parts of apa1331 and compared these with those exhibited in its wild type (WT). In apa331, the lower and middle parts of the panicle showed contrasting concentrations of all studied phytohormones, but highly significant changes in IAA and ABA, compared to the upper part of the panicle. A comparative transcriptome of apa1331 and WT apical spikelets was performed to explore genes causing the physiological basis of spikelet abortion. The differential expression analysis revealed a significant downregulation and upregulation of 1587 and 978 genes, respectively. Hierarchical clustering of differentially expressed genes (DEGs) revealed the correlation of gene ontology (GO) terms associated with antioxidant activity, peroxidase activity, and oxidoreductase activity. KEGG pathway analysis using parametric gene set enrichment analysis (PGSEA) revealed the downregulation of the biological processes, including cell wall polysaccharides and fatty acids derivatives, in apa1331 compared to its WT. Based on fold change (FC) value and high variation in expression during late inflorescence, early inflorescence, and antherdevelopment, we predicted a list of novel genes, which presumably can be the potential targets of inflorescence development. Our study not only provides novel insights into the role of the physiological dynamics involved in panicle abortion, but also highlights the potential targets involved in reproductive development.
Keywords: phytohormone; spikelet abortion; transcriptome; DEG; inflorescence development