Crop Biotech Update

A Vernalization Pathway Gene from Soybean Promotes Flowering in Arabidopsis

September 30, 2015

The timing of flowering is vital to successful reproduction and directly affects crop yield. Although extended period of low temperatures is not required for flower induction in soybean, vernalization pathway genes have been retained in the species. Chinese researchers Jing Lü and Haicui Suo studied the function of these genes in soybean.

Researchers found that Glyma11g13220, a soybean vernalization gene, was expressed in different organs at all developmental stages. Its expression was also found higher in leaves and pods. The gene was also revealed to be responsive to photoperiod and low temperatures.

Overexpression of Glyma11g13220 in an Arabidopsis resulted in early flowering. Further analysis revealed that transcript levels of flower repressor FLOWERING LOCUS C (FLC) decreased significantly in transgenic Arabidopsis compared with wild type, while the expression of both VERNALIZATION INSENSITIVE 3 (VIN3) and FLOWERING LOCUS T (FT) increased.

The results suggest that Glyma11g13220, which is responsive to photoperiod and low temperature in soybean, may also participate in the vernalization pathway in Arabidopsis and help regulate flowering time.

For more information on the study, feel free to read the full article on BMC Plant Biology.