Paternal arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal status affects DNA methylation in seeds

Varga, Sandra and Soulsbury, Carl (2017) Paternal arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal status affects DNA methylation in seeds. Biology Letters, 13 (9). ISSN 1744-9561

Full content URL: https://doi.org/10.1098/rsbl.2017.0407

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Abstract

Most land plants grow in association with arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) in their roots and these fungi can cause transgenerational effect on plants’ offspring. These may be caused by changes in DNA methylation of the offspring. In this study, we compared the amount of global DNA methylation in seeds of the gynodioecious plant Geranium sylvaticum in relation to the gender and the AMF status of the parents producing the seeds. The amount of DNA methylated was positively related to seed mass. Seeds produced by females had a similar proportion of methylated DNA regardless of the AMF status of the father siring the seed. In contrast, seeds from hermaphrodites had higher DNA methylation when sired by AMF fathers. We show for the first time that AMF status of fathers can affect DNA methylation in seeds and that these changes are further dependent on the gender of the mother producing the seeds.

Keywords:gynodioecy, maternal and paternal effects, transgenerational effects
Subjects:C Biological Sciences > C180 Ecology
C Biological Sciences > C140 Developmental/Reproductive Biology
Divisions:College of Science > School of Life Sciences
ID Code:28689
Deposited On:06 Sep 2017 08:10

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