Microscopic and Transcriptomic Analysis of Pollination Processes in Self-Incompatible Taraxacum koksaghyz

Tassilo Erik Wollenweber, Nicole van Deenen, Kai-Uwe Roelfs, Dirk Prüfer, Christian Schulze Gronover
2021 Plants  
The transition of the Russian dandelion Taraxacum koksaghyz (Asteraceae) to a profitable, alternative crop producing natural rubber and inulin requires the optimization of several agronomic traits, cultivation conditions and harvesting procedures to improve the yield. However, efficient breeding is hindered by the obligatory sexual outcrossing of this species. Several other asters have been investigated to determine the mechanism of self-incompatibility, but the underlying molecular basis
more » ... s unclear. We therefore investigated the self-pollination and cross-pollination of two compatible T. koksaghyz varieties (TkMS2 and TkMS3) by microscopy and transcriptomic analysis to shed light on the pollination process. Self-pollination showed typical sporophytic self-incompatibility characteristics, with the rare pollen swelling at the pollen tube apex. In contrast, cross-pollination was characterized by pollen germination and penetration of the stigma by the growing pollen tubes. RNA-Seq was used to profile gene expression in the floret tissue during self-pollination and cross-pollination, and the differentially expressed genes were identified. This revealed three candidates for the early regulation of pollination in T. koksaghyz, which can be used to examine self-incompatibility mechanisms in more detail and to facilitate breeding programs.
doi:10.3390/plants10030555 pmid:33809548 fatcat:poqtrxi7jzctvc4ofxzbkx2ymi