Genome-wide investigation on the genetic variations of rice disease resistance genes
Exploitation of plant disease resistance (R) gene in breeding programs has been proven to be the most efficient strategy for coping with the threat of pathogens. An understanding of R-gene variation is the basis for this strategy. Here we report a genome-wide investigation on the variation of NBS-LRR-encoding genes, the common type of R genes, between two sequenced rice genomes, Oryza sativa L. var. Nipponbare and 93–11. We show that the allelic nucleotide diversity in 65.0% of 397 least-divergent pairs is not high (0.344% on average), while the remaining 35% display a greater diversity (5.4% on average). The majority of conserved R genes is single-copy and/or located as a singleton. The clustered, particularly the complex-clustered, R-genes contribute greatly to the rich genetic variation. Surprisingly only 11.2% of R-genes have remarkably high ratios of non-synonymous to synonymous rates, which is much less than the 17.4% observed between Arabidopsis genomes. Noticeable “artificially selective sweeping” could be detected in a large proportion of the conserved R-genes, a scenario described in the “arms race” co-evolutionary model. Based on our study, a variation pattern of R-genes is proposed and confirmed by the analysis of R-genes from other rice lines, indicating that the observed variation pattern may be common in all rice lines.
KeywordsDisease resistance genes Genomic comparison Rice Variation
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