Send to

Choose Destination
Cold Spring Harb Symp Quant Biol. 2012;77:105-15. doi: 10.1101/sqb.2013.77.014449. Epub 2013 Apr 25.

The molecular basis of vernalization in different plant groups.

Author information

Department of Biochemistry, University of Wisconsin, Madison, Wisconsin 53706, USA.


Timing of flowering is key to the reproductive success of many plants. In temperate climates, flowering is often coordinated with seasonal environmental cues such as temperature and photoperiod. Vernalization, the process by which a prolonged exposure to the cold of winter results in competence to flower during the following spring, is an example of the influence of temperature on the timing of flowering. In different groups of plants, there are distinct genes involved in vernalization, indicating that vernalization systems evolved independently in different plant groups. The convergent evolution of vernalization systems is not surprising given that angiosperm families had begun to diverge in warmer paleoclimates in which a vernalization response was not advantageous. Here, we review what is known of the vernalization response in three different plant groups: crucifers (Arabidopsis), Amaranthaceae (sugar beet), and Pooideae (wheat, barley, and Brachypodium distachyon). We also discuss the advantages of using Brachypodium as a model system to study flowering and vernalization in the Pooids. Finally, we discuss the evolution and function of the Ghd7/VRN2 gene family in grasses.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for HighWire
Loading ...
Support Center