Widespread and transgenerational retrotransposon activation in inter- and intra-species recombinant inbred populations of Lotus japonicus

Eigo Fukai*, Manabu Yoshikawa, Niraj Shah, Niels Sandal, Akio Miyao, Seijiro Ono, Hideki Hirakawa, Turgut Yigit Akyol, Yosuke Umehara, Ken-Ichi Nonomura, Jens Stougaard, Hirohiko Hirochika, Makoto Hayashi, Shusei Sato, Stig Uggerhøj Andersen, Keiichi Okazaki

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

Transposable elements (TEs) constitute a large proportion of genomes of multicellular eukaryotes including flowering plants. TEs are normally maintained in a silenced state and their transpositions rarely occur. Hybridization between distant species has been regarded as a "shock" that stimulates genome re-organization, including TE mobilization. However, whether crosses between genetically close parents that result in viable and fertile offspring can induce TE transpositions has remained obscure. Here, we investigated the activation of long terminal repeat (LTR) retrotransposons in three Lotus japonicus recombinant inbred line (RIL) populations. We found that at least six LTR retrotransposon families were activated and transposed in 78% of the investigated RILs. LORE1a, one of the transposed LTR retrotransposons, showed transgenerational epigenetic activation, indicating the long-term effects of epigenetic instability induced by hybridization. Our study highlights TE activation as unexpectedly common events in plant reproduction.

Original languageEnglish
JournalThe Plant Journal
Volume111
Issue5
Pages (from-to)1397-1410
Number of pages14
ISSN0960-7412
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2022

Keywords

  • Lotus japonicus
  • epigenetics
  • hybridization
  • long terminal repeat (LTR) retrotransposons
  • pollen
  • recombinant inbred line (RIL) population
  • sexual reproduction
  • transposable elements (TEs)

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