Characterization of a heat-activated retrotransposon in Vigna angularis

Breed Sci. 2018 Mar;68(2):168-176. doi: 10.1270/jsbbs.17085. Epub 2018 Mar 24.


In plants, several transposable elements are conserved across species. We found a homolog of ONSEN, which is a heat-activated retrotransposon originally isolated from Arabidopsis thaliana, in Vigna. The ONSEN-like elements (VaONS) were detected in all the analyzed Japanese accessions of Vigna angularis (adzuki bean) by Southern blot analysis. However, VaONS sequences were observed to be polymorphic in the different accessions. Interestingly, extrachromosomal DNA (ecDNA) was detected in some accessions of adzuki bean, indicating the conserved heat-activation of VaONS. Furthermore, we successfully induced retrotransposition of VaONS in adzuki plant regenerated through callus. Findings of our study should provide a new tool for molecular breeding of adzuki bean.

Keywords: ONSEN; Vigna angularis; adzuki; heat stress; retrotransposon.