Abstract Detail


Kim, Emily [1], Pelosi, Jessie [2], Barbazuk, W. Brad [3], Sessa, Emily [4].

Gene expression patterns between gametophyte and sporophyte life phases and the genetic forces that drive sex determination in ferns.

There are two distinct life stages of ferns: the reduced, ephemeral gametophyte and the large, leafy sporophyte. Ferns are unique among land plants in that these life phases are nutritionally independent. However, the mechanism for how the fern genome produces vastly different life stages is unknown. Furthermore, much is unknown regarding the genetic regulation of sex determination, which occurs in the gametophyte life phase, because ferns, unlike other plants and humans, do not have sex chromosomes. Despite the two life phases being morphologically and functionally different, recent studies in ferns have found that the genes expressed in each life phase are similar. To start unraveling the genetic underpinnings that drive differences in life phases and sexual determination in ferns between gametophyte and sporophyte life stages, we will explore differential gene expression (DGE) and alternative splicing (AS) using Dryopteris ludoviciana as our study system. We will also explore DGE and AS between male and female gametophytes to see if gene expression or AS may be responsible for their functional differences. RNA will be extracted from lab-grown sporophytes and gametophytes to sequence nine RNA libraries (three sporophyte, three male gametophyte, and three female gametophyte) to a depth of 20-25 million paired-end reads. A reference transcriptome will be generated using these libraries and reads will be mapped to the reference to analyze gene expression and alternative splicing. Using this methodology, we will explore the genetics behind the differences between gametophytic and sporophytic life phases and the sex determination in ferns.

1 - University of Florida, Microbiology and Cell Science, Gainesville, FL, 32611, USA
2 - University Of Florida, Biology, 521 Bartram Hall PO Box 118525, Gainesville, FL, 32611, United States
3 - University of Florida, Biology and Genetics Institute, FL, 32611, USA
4 - University of Florida, Biology, FL, 32611, USA

alternative splicing.

Presentation Type: Poster
Number: PPT005
Abstract ID:101
Candidate for Awards:None

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