, Volume 61, Issue 4-5, pp 577-587

Suppression of gene expression of a recessive SP11/SCR allele by an untranscribed SP11/SCR allele in Brassica self-incompatibility

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Mutations in the S locus of a self-compatible cultivar Yellow Sarson in Brassica rapa, which has a self-compatible class-I S haplotype, S-f2, were investigated. S-28 in Brassica oleracea was found to be a member of an interspecific pair with S-f2 in B. rapa. The original S haplotype of S-f2 was identified to be S-54 in B. rapa. Sequence comparison of alleles in S-f2 with those in S-54 and B. oleracea S-28 revealed insertion of a retrotransposon-like sequence in the first intron of SRK and 89-bp deletion in the promoter region of SP11. No transcripts of SRK and SP11 were detected in S-f2 homozygotes, suggesting that the insertion and the deletion in SRK and SP11, respectively, caused the loss of the function of these genes. Promoter assay using transgenic plants indicated that the SP11 promoter of S-f2 has no activity. Heterozygotes of S-f2 and a normal class-II S haplotype, S-60, in B. rapa were found to be self-compatible. Interestingly, transcription of SP11-60 was revealed to be suppressed in the S-f2/S-60 heterozygotes, suggesting that an untranscribed class-I SP11 allele suppresses the expression of a recessive class-II SP11 allele in the anthers of S heterozygotes. Similar phenomenon was observed in heterozygotes of a self-compatible class-I S haplotype and a self-incompatible class-II S haplotype in B. oleracea.