Transcriptome shock after interspecific hybridization in senecio is ameliorated by genome duplication

Curr Biol. 2006 Aug 22;16(16):1652-9. doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2006.06.071.


Allopolyploidy, which involves genome doubling of an interspecific hybrid is an important mechanism of abrupt speciation in flowering plants [1-6]. Recent studies show that allopolyploid formation is accompanied by extensive changes to patterns of parental gene expression ("transcriptome shock") [7-15] and that this is likely the consequence of interspecific hybridization rather than polyploidization [16]. To investigate the relative impacts of hybridization and polyploidization on transcription, we compared floral gene expression in allohexaploid Senecio cambrensis with that in its parent species, S. vulgaris (tetraploid) and S. squalidus (diploid), and their triploid F1 hybrid, S. x baxteri [17]. Major changes to parental gene expression were associated principally with S. x baxteri, suggesting that the polyploidization event responsible for the formation of S. cambrensis had a widespread calming effect on altered gene expression arising from hybridization [17]. To test this hypothesis, we analyzed floral gene expression in resynthesized lines of S. cambrensis and show that, for many genes, the "transcriptome shock" observed in S. x baxteri is calmed ("ameliorated") after genome doubling in the first generation of synthetic S. cambrensis and this altered expression pattern is maintained in subsequent generations. These findings indicate that hybridization and polyploidization have immediate yet distinct effects on large-scale patterns of gene expression.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Gene Duplication*
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Plant / genetics*
  • Genetic Speciation*
  • Genome, Plant / genetics*
  • Hybridization, Genetic*
  • Oligonucleotide Array Sequence Analysis
  • Ploidies*
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Senecio / genetics*
  • Senecio / metabolism