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Trends Genet. 2005 Oct;21(10):539-43.

Novel patterns of gene expression in polyploid plants.

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UBC Botanical Garden and Centre for Plant Research, 2357 Main Mall, MacMillan Building, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Colombia, Canada, V6T 1Z4.


Genome doubling, or polyploidy, is a major factor accounting for duplicate genes found in most eukaryotic genomes. Polyploidy has considerable effects on duplicate gene expression, including silencing and up- or downregulation of one of the duplicated genes. These changes can arise with the onset of polyploidization or within several generations after polyploid formation and they can have epigenetic causal factors. Many expression alterations are organ-specific. Specific genes can be independently and repeatedly silenced during polyploidization, whereas patterns for other genes appear to be more stochastic. Three recent reports have provided intriguing new insights into the patterns, timing and mechanisms of gene expression changes that accompany polyploidy in plants.

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