Gene expression plasticity resulting from parental leaf damage in Mimulus guttatus

Jack M. Colicchio, Patrick J. Monnahan, John K. Kelly, Lena C. Hileman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Summary: Leaf trichome density in Mimulus guttatus can be altered by the parental environment. In this study, we compared global gene expression patterns in progeny of damaged and control plants. Significant differences in gene expression probably explain the observed trichome response, and identify additional responsive pathways. Using whole transcriptome RNA sequencing, we estimated differential gene expression between isogenic seedlings whose parents had, or had not, been subject to leaf damage. We identified over 900 genes that were differentially expressed in response to parental wounding. These genes clustered into groups involved in cell wall and cell membrane development, stress response pathways, and secondary metabolism. Gene expression is modified as a consequence of the parental environment in a targeted way that probably alters multiple developmental pathways, and may increase progeny fitness if they experience environments similar to that of their parents.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)894-906
Number of pages13
JournalNew Phytologist
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 New Phytologist Trust.


  • Epigenetics
  • Mimulus guttatus
  • Plant stress response
  • RNA-seq
  • Transcriptome
  • Transgenerational plasticity
  • Trichomes


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