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J Exp Bot. 2019 Aug 7;70(15):4027-4037. doi: 10.1093/jxb/erz169.

A wheat/rye polymorphism affects seminal root length and yield across different irrigation regimes.

Author information

1
Department of Plant Sciences, University of California, Davis, CA, USA.
2
Instituto Tecnológico Chascomús (IIB-INTECH), Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas (CONICET) and Universidad Nacional de San Martín (UNSAM), Chascomús, Buenos Aires, Argentina.
3
Institute of Genetics and Developmental Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China.
4
Department of Evolutionary and Environmental Biology, University of Haifa, Haifa, Israel.
5
Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Chevy Chase, MD USA.

Abstract

The introgression of a small segment of wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) chromosome arm 1BS in the distal region of the rye (Secale cereale L.) 1RS.1BL arm translocation in wheat (henceforth 1RSRW) was previously associated with reduced grain yield, carbon isotope discrimination, and stomatal conductance, suggesting reduced access to soil moisture. Here we show that lines with the normal 1RS arm have longer roots than lines with the 1RSRW arm in both field and hydroponic experiments. In the 1RSRW lines, differences in seminal root length were associated with a developmentally regulated arrest of the root apical meristem (RAM). Approximately 10 d after germination, the seminal roots of the 1RSRW plants showed a gradual reduction in elongation rate, and stopped growing a week later. Seventeen days after germination, the roots of the 1RSRW plants showed altered gradients of reactive oxygen species and emergence of lateral roots close to the RAM, suggesting changes in the root meristem. The 1RSRW lines also showed reduced biomass (estimated by the normalized difference vegetation index) and grain yield relative to the 1RS lines, with larger differences under reduced or excessive irrigation than under normal irrigation. These results suggest that this genetic variation could be useful to modulate root architecture.

KEYWORDS:

Drought tolerance; lateral roots; reactive oxygen species (ROS); roots; rye; waterlogging; wheat

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