Dormancy genes from weedy rice respond divergently to seed development environments

Xing You Gu, Shahryar F. Kianian, Michael E. Foley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations


Genes interacting with seed developmental environments control primary dormancy. To understand how a multigenic system evolved to adapt to the changing environments in weedy rice, we evaluated genetic components of three dormancy QTL in a synchronized nondormant genetic background. Two genetically identical populations segregating for qSD1, qSD7-1, and qSD12 were grown under greenhouse and natural conditions differing in temperature, relative humidity, and light intensity during seed development. Low temperatures tended to enhance dormancy in both conditions. However, genotypes responded to the environments divergently so that two populations displayed similar distributions for germination. Additive and/or dominance effects of the three loci explained ∼90% of genetic variances and their epistases accounted for the remainder in each environment. The qSD1 and qSD7-1 main effects were increased, while the qSD12 additive effect was decreased by relatively low temperatures. Both gene main and epistatic effects were involved in G X E interactions, which in magnitude were greater than environmental main effect. The divergent responses of dormancy genes observed in this simple multigenic system presumably have selective advantages in natural populations adapted to changing environments and hence represent a genetic mechanism stabilizing the dormancy level of weedy rice ripened in different seasons or temperature regimes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1199-1211
Number of pages13
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2006


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