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Open AccessArticle

Sequencing and Analysis of the Sex Determination Region of Populus trichocarpa

1
Department of Biology, West Virginia University, Morgantown, WV 26506-6057, USA
2
HudsonAlpha Institute of Biotechnology, 601 Genome Way Northwest, Huntsville, AL 35806, USA
3
Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute, 2800 Mitchell Drive, Walnut Creek, CA 94598, USA
4
Center for Bioenergy Innovation, Biosciences Division, Oak Ridge National Lab, Oak Ridge, TN 37830, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Genes 2020, 11(8), 843; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes11080843
Received: 1 July 2020 / Revised: 17 July 2020 / Accepted: 22 July 2020 / Published: 24 July 2020
The ages and sizes of a sex-determination region (SDR) are difficult to determine in non-model species. Due to the lack of recombination and enrichment of repetitive elements in SDRs, the quality of assembly with short sequencing reads is universally low. Unique features present in the SDRs help provide clues about how SDRs are established and how they evolve in the absence of recombination. Several Populus species have been reported with a male heterogametic configuration of sex (XX/XY system) mapped on chromosome 19, but the exact location of the SDR has been inconsistent among species, and thus far, none of these SDRs has been fully assembled in a genomic context. Here we identify the Y-SDR from a Y-linked contig directly from a long-read PacBio assembly of a Populus trichocarpa male individual. We also identified homologous gene sequences in the SDR of P. trichocarpa and the SDR of the W chromosome in Salix purpurea. We show that inverted repeats (IRs) found in the Y-SDR and the W-SDR are lineage-specific. We hypothesize that, although the two IRs are derived from the same orthologous gene within each species, they likely have independent evolutionary histories. Furthermore, the truncated inverted repeats in P. trichocarpa may code for small RNAs that target the homologous gene for RNA-directed DNA methylation. These findings support the hypothesis that diverse sex-determining systems may be achieved through similar evolutionary pathways, thereby providing a possible mechanism to explain the lability of sex-determination systems in plants in general. View Full-Text
Keywords: sex; Populus; genome; inverted repeats; cytokinin response regulator sex; Populus; genome; inverted repeats; cytokinin response regulator
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MDPI and ACS Style

Zhou, R.; Macaya-Sanz, D.; Schmutz, J.; Jenkins, J.W.; Tuskan, G.A.; DiFazio, S.P. Sequencing and Analysis of the Sex Determination Region of Populus trichocarpa. Genes 2020, 11, 843. https://doi.org/10.3390/genes11080843

AMA Style

Zhou R, Macaya-Sanz D, Schmutz J, Jenkins JW, Tuskan GA, DiFazio SP. Sequencing and Analysis of the Sex Determination Region of Populus trichocarpa. Genes. 2020; 11(8):843. https://doi.org/10.3390/genes11080843

Chicago/Turabian Style

Zhou, Ran; Macaya-Sanz, David; Schmutz, Jeremy; Jenkins, Jerry W.; Tuskan, Gerald A.; DiFazio, Stephen P. 2020. "Sequencing and Analysis of the Sex Determination Region of Populus trichocarpa" Genes 11, no. 8: 843. https://doi.org/10.3390/genes11080843

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