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J Mol Evol. 2009 Jul;69(1):32-41. doi: 10.1007/s00239-009-9249-y. Epub 2009 Jun 4.

RNase-based gametophytic self-incompatibility evolution: Questioning the hypothesis of multiple independent recruitments of the S-pollen gene.

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Instituto de Biologia Molecular e Celular, University of Porto, Portugal.


Multiple independent recruitments of the S-pollen component (always an F-box gene) during RNase-based gametophytic self-incompatibility evolution have recently been suggested. Therefore, different mechanisms could be used to achieve the rejection of incompatible pollen in different plant families. This hypothesis is, however, mainly based on the interpretation of phylogenetic analyses, using a small number of divergent nucleotide sequences. In this work we show, based on a large collection of F-box S-like sequences, that the inferred relationship of F-box S-pollen and F-box S-like sequences is dependent on the sequence alignment software and phylogenetic method used. Thus, at present, it is not possible to address the phylogenetic relationship of F-box S-pollen and S-like sequences from different plant families. In Petunia and Malus/Pyrus the putative S-pollen gene(s) show(s) variability patterns different than expected for an S-pollen gene, raising the question of false identification. Here we show that in Petunia, the unexpected features of the putative S-pollen gene are not incompatible with this gene's being the S-pollen gene. On the other hand, it is very unlikely that the Pyrus SFBB-gamma gene is involved in specificity determination.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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