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Open AccessArticle

Reduced Expression of CbUFO Is Associated with the Phenotype of a Flower-Defective Cosmos bipinnatus

1
Key Laboratory of Horticultural Plant Biology, Ministry of Education; College of Horticulture and Forestry Sciences, Huazhong Agricultural University, Wuhan 430070, China
2
Landscape plants research department, Wuhan Institute of Landscape Architecture, Wuhan 430081, China
3
Guangzhou Institute of Forestry and Landscape Architecture, Guangzhou 510405, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2019, 20(10), 2503; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms20102503
Received: 27 March 2019 / Revised: 15 May 2019 / Accepted: 16 May 2019 / Published: 21 May 2019
(This article belongs to the Collection Genetics and Molecular Breeding in Plants)
LEAFY (LFY) and UNUSUAL FLORAL ORGANS (UFO) homologous genes have been reported to play key roles in promoting the initiation of floral meristems in raceme- and cyme-type plants. Asteraceae, a large family of plants with more than 23,000 species, has a unique head-like inflorescence termed capitulum. Here, we report a floral defective plant of the garden cosmos named green head (gh), which shows homogeneous inflorescence, indistinguishable inflorescence periphery and center, and the replacement of flower meristems by indeterminate inflorescence meristems, coupled with iterative production of bract-like organs and higher order of inflorescences. A comparison of the LFY- and UFO-like genes (CbFLY and CbUFO) isolated from both the wild-type and gh cosmos revealed that CbUFO may play an important role in inflorescence differentiation into different structures and promotion of flower initiation, and the reduced expression of CbUFO in the gh cosmos could be associated with the phenotypes of the flower-defective plants. Further expression analysis indicated that CbUFO may promote the conversion of inflorescence meristem into floral meristem in early ray flower formation, but does not play a role in its later growth period. View Full-Text
Keywords: Cosmos; floral mutation; LEAFY UNUSUAL FLORAL ORGANS; capitulum development Cosmos; floral mutation; LEAFY UNUSUAL FLORAL ORGANS; capitulum development
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Li, F.; Lan, W.; Zhou, Q.; Liu, B.; Chen, F.; Zhang, S.; Bao, M.; Liu, G. Reduced Expression of CbUFO Is Associated with the Phenotype of a Flower-Defective Cosmos bipinnatus. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2019, 20, 2503.

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