Epigenetic Variation at a Genomic Locus Affecting Biomass Accumulation under Low Nitrogen in Arabidopsis thaliana

Markus Kuhlmann, Rhonda C. Meyer, Zhongtao Jia, Doreen Klose, Lisa-Marie Krieg, Nicolaus von Wirén, Thomas Altmann
2020 Agronomy  
Nitrogen (N) is a macronutrient determining crop yield. The application of N fertilisers can substantially increase the yield, but excess use also causes the nitrate pollution of water resources and increases production costs. Increasing N use efficiency (NUE) in crop plants is an important step to implement low-input agricultural systems. We used Arabidopsis thaliana as model system to investigate the natural genetic diversity in traits related to NUE. Natural variation was used to study
more » ... used to study adaptive growth patterns and changes in gene expression associated with limited nitrate availability. A genome-wide association study revealed an association of eight SNP markers on Chromosome 1 with shoot growth under limited N. The identified linkage disequilibrium (LD) interval includes the DNA sequences of three cysteine/histidine-rich C1 domain proteins in tandem orientation. These genes differ in promoter structure, methylation pattern and expression level among accessions, correlating with growth performance under N deficiency. Our results suggest the involvement of epigenetic regulation in the expression of NUE-related traits.
doi:10.3390/agronomy10050636 fatcat:plb3dac3zjd7ngt4a2lxspmt4m