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, 251 (1), 30

DNA Content Equivalence in Haploid and Diploid Maize Leaves

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DNA Content Equivalence in Haploid and Diploid Maize Leaves

D Santeramo et al. Planta.

Abstract

The qPCR assay developed to differentiate haploid and diploid maize leaf samples was unsuccessful due to DNA content difference. Haploid cells are packed more closely together with less cellular expansion. Increased ploidy content (> 2 N) directly correlates with increased cell size in plants, but few studies have examined cell morphology in plants with reduced ploidy (i.e., haploids). To pioneer a scalable new ploidy test, we compared DNA content and cellular morphology of haploid and diploid maize leaves. The amount of genomic DNA recovered from standardized leaf-punch samples was equivalent between these two ploidy types, while both epidermal and mesophyll cell types were smaller in haploid plants. Pavement cells had a substantially smaller size than mesophyll cells, and this effect was more pronounced in the abaxial epidermis. Interveinal distance and guard cell size were significantly reduced in haploids, but the cell percentage comprising stomata did not change. These results confirm the direct correlation between ploidy content and cell size in plants, and suggest that reduced cell expansion predominantly explains DNA content equivalence between haploid and diploid samples, confounding efforts to develop a haploid detection method using DNA content.

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