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      Distribution of 45S rDNA sites in chromosomes of plants: Structural and evolutionary implications

      1 , , 1

      BMC Evolutionary Biology

      BioMed Central

      45S rDNA sites, Chromosome regions, Secondary constrictions, NOR, Meta-analysis

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          45S rDNA sites are the most widely documented chromosomal regions in eukaryotes. The analysis of the distribution of these sites along the chromosome in several genera has suggested some bias in their distribution. In order to evaluate if these loci are in fact non-randomly distributed and what is the influence of some chromosomal and karyotypic features on the distribution of these sites, a database was built with the position and number of 45S rDNA sites obtained by FISH together with other karyotypic data from 846 plant species.


          In angiosperms the most frequent numbers of sites per diploid karyotype were two and four, suggesting that in spite of the wide dispersion capacity of these sequences the number of rDNA sites tends to be restricted. The sites showed a preferential distribution on the short arms, mainly in the terminal regions. Curiously, these sites were frequently found on the short arms of acrocentric chromosomes where they usually occupy the whole arm. The trend to occupy the terminal region is especially evident in holokinetic chromosomes, where all of them were terminally located. In polyploids there is a trend towards reduction in the number of sites per monoploid complement. In gymnosperms, however, the distribution of rDNA sites varied strongly among the sampled families.


          The location of 45S rDNA sites do not vary randomly, occurring preferentially on the short arm and in the terminal region of chromosomes in angiosperms. The meaning of this preferential location is not known, but some hypotheses are considered and the observed trends are discussed.

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          Most cited references 78

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          Bidirectional interlocus concerted evolution following allopolyploid speciation in cotton (Gossypium).

          Polyploidy is a prominent process in plant evolution; yet few data address the question of whether homeologous sequences evolve independently subsequent to polyploidization. We report on ribosomal DNA (rDNA) evolution in five allopolyploid (AD genome) species of cotton (Gossypium) and species representing their diploid progenitors (A genome, D genome). Sequence data from the internal transcribed spacer regions (ITS1 and ITS2) and the 5.8S gene indicate that rDNA arrays are homogeneous, or nearly so, in all diploids and allopolyploids examined. Because these arrays occur at four chromosomal loci in allopolyploid cotton, two in each subgenome, repeats from different arrays must have become homogenized by interlocus concerted evolution. Southern hybridization analysis combined with copy-number estimation demonstrate that this process has gone to completion in the diploids and to completion or near-completion in all allopolyploid species and that it most likely involves the entire rDNA repeat. Phylogenetic analysis demonstrates that interlocus concerted evolution has been bidirectional in allopolyploid species--i.e., rDNA from four polyploid lineages has been homogenized to a D genome repeat type, whereas sequences from Gossypium mustelinum have concerted to an A genome repeat type. Although little is known regarding the functional significance of interlocus concerted evolution of homeologous sequences, this study demonstrates that the process occurs for tandemly repeated sequences in diploid and polyploid plants. That interlocus concerted evolution can occur bidirectionally subsequent to hybidization and polyploidization has significant implications for phylogeny reconstruction, especially when based on rDNA sequences.
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            The correlation between rDNA copy number and genome size in eukaryotes.

            Both rDNA gene multiplicity and genome size vary widely among eukaryotes. For some time, there has been debate regarding any possible relationship between these two parameters. The present study uses data on genome size and rDNA copy number for 162 species of plants and animals to test the association between genome size and rDNA copy number, and provides the first convincing evidence of a strong positive relationship between the two within and among these two groups of organisms. No simple explanations exist for this relationship, but it is nevertheless of clear relevance from both practical and theoretical perspectives.
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              Genome downsizing in polyploid plants

               I. LEITCH,  M Bennett (2004)

                Author and article information

                BMC Evol Biol
                BMC Evol. Biol
                BMC Evolutionary Biology
                BioMed Central
                26 November 2012
                : 12
                : 225
                [1 ]Department of Botany Laboratory of Plant Cytogenetics and Evolution, Federal University of Pernambuco Center of Biological Sciences, Rua Nelson Chaves, s/n Cidade Universitária, Recife, PE, 50.670-420, Brazil
                Copyright ©2012 Roa and Guerra; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

                This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


                Evolutionary Biology

                nor, chromosome regions, meta-analysis, 45s rdna sites, secondary constrictions


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