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Plant Physiol. 2006 Oct;142(2):629-41. Epub 2006 Aug 18.

Self-compatibility of two apricot selections is associated with two pollen-part mutations of different nature.

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  • 1Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Agrarias, 46113 Moncada Valencia, Spain.


Loss of pollen-S function in Prunus self-compatible mutants has recently been associated with deletions or insertions in S-haplotype-specific F-box (SFB) genes. We have studied two self-compatible cultivars of apricot (Prunus armeniaca), Currot (S(C)S(C)) and Canino (S(2)S(C)), sharing the naturally occurring self-compatible (S(C))-haplotype. Sequence analysis showed that whereas the S(C)-RNase is unaltered, a 358-bp insertion is found in the SFB(C) gene, resulting in the expression of a truncated protein. The alteration of this gene is associated with self-incompatibility (SI) breakdown, supporting previous evidence that points to SFB being the pollen-S gene of the Prunus SI S-locus. On the other hand, PCR analysis of progenies derived from Canino showed that pollen grains carrying the S(2)-haplotype were also able to overcome the incompatibility barrier. However, alterations in the SFB(2) gene or evidence of pollen-S duplications were not detected. A new class of F-box genes encoding a previously uncharacterized protein with high sequence similarity (approximately 62%) to Prunus SFB proteins was identified in this work, but the available data rules them out of producing S-heteroallelic pollen and thus the cause of the pollen-part mutation. These results suggest that cv Canino has an additional mutation, not linked to the S-locus, which causes a loss of pollen-S activity when present in pollen. As a whole, these findings support the proposal that the S-locus products besides other S-locus independent factors are required for gametophytic SI in Prunus.

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