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Genes 2019, 10(1), 68; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes10010068

Convergent Evolution of the Seed Shattering Trait

1
Dipartimento di Scienze Agrarie, Alimentari ed Ambientali, Università Politecnica delle Marche, via Brecce Bianche, 60131 Ancona, Italy
2
Scuola di Scienze Agrarie, Forestali, Alimentari e Ambientali, Università degli Studi della Basilicata, viale dell’Ateneo Lucano 10, 85100 Potenza, Italy
3
Dipartimento di Agraria, Università degli Studi di Sassari, Via E. De Nicola, 07100 Sassari, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 13 December 2018 / Revised: 15 January 2019 / Accepted: 17 January 2019 / Published: 19 January 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Genomics of Plant Domestication and Crop Evolution)
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Abstract

Loss of seed shattering is a key trait in crop domestication, particularly for grain crops. For wild plants, seed shattering is a crucial mechanism to achieve greater fitness, although in the agricultural context, this mechanism reduces harvesting efficiency, especially under dry conditions. Loss of seed shattering was acquired independently in different monocotyledon and dicotyledon crop species by ‘convergent phenotypic evolution’, leading to similar low dehiscent and indehiscent phenotypes. Here, the main aim is to review the current knowledge about seed shattering in crops, in order to highlight the tissue modifications that underlie the convergent phenotypic evolution of reduced shattering in different types of fruit, from the silique of Brassicaceae species, to the pods of legumes and spikes of cereals. Emphasis is given to legumes, with consideration of recent data obtained for the common bean. The current review also discusses to what extent convergent phenotypes arose from parallel changes at the histological and/or molecular levels. For this reason, an overview is included of the main findings relating to the genetic control of seed shattering in the model species Arabidopsis thaliana and in other important crops. View Full-Text
Keywords: crop domestication; legumes; common bean; gene expression; pod anatomy; QTL mapping crop domestication; legumes; common bean; gene expression; pod anatomy; QTL mapping
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Di Vittori, V.; Gioia, T.; Rodriguez, M.; Bellucci, E.; Bitocchi, E.; Nanni, L.; Attene, G.; Rau, D.; Papa, R. Convergent Evolution of the Seed Shattering Trait. Genes 2019, 10, 68.

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