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Genetics. Nov 2002; 162(3): 1457–1468.
PMCID: PMC1462321

Characterization and effects of the replicated flowering time gene FLC in Brassica rapa.

Abstract

Functional genetic redundancy is widespread in plants and could have an important impact on phenotypic diversity if the multiple gene copies act in an additive or dosage-dependent manner. We have cloned four Brassica rapa homologs (BrFLC) of the MADS-box flowering-time regulator FLC, located at the top of chromosome 5 of Arabidopsis thaliana. Relative rate tests revealed no evidence for differential rates of evolution and the ratios of nonsynonymous-to-synonymous substitutions suggest BrFLC loci are not under strong purifying selection. BrFLC1, BrFLC2, and BrFLC3 map to genomic regions that are collinear with the top of At5, consistent with a polyploid origin. BrFLC5 maps near a junction of two collinear regions to Arabidopsis, one of which includes an FLC-like gene (AGL31). However, all BrFLC sequences are more closely related to FLC than to AGL31. BrFLC1, BrFLC2, and BrFLC5 cosegregate with flowering-time loci evaluated in populations derived by backcrossing late-flowering alleles from a biennial parent into an annual parent. Two loci segregating in a single backcross population affected flowering in a completely additive manner. Thus, replicated BrFLC genes appear to have a similar function and interact in an additive manner to modulate flowering time.

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Selected References

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