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Original article (peer-reviewed)

Volume (Issue) 42(6)
Page(s) 46
Title of proceedings NUCLEIC ACIDS RESEARCH
DOI 10.1093/nar/gkt1376

Open Access

Type of Open Access Website


Genome duplication with hybridization, or allopolyploidization, occurs commonly in plants, and is considered to be a strong force for generating new species. However, genome-wide quantification of homeolog expression ratios was technically hindered because of the high homology between homeologous gene pairs. To quantify the homeolog expression ratio using RNA-seq obtained from polyploids, a new method named HomeoRoq was developed, in which the genomic origin of sequencing reads was estimated using mismatches between the read and each parental genome. To verify this method, we first assembled the two diploid parental genomes of Arabidopsis halleri subsp. gemmifera and Arabidopsis lyrata subsp. petraea (Arabidopsis petraea subsp. umbrosa), then generated a synthetic allotetraploid, mimicking the natural allopolyploid Arabidopsis kamchatica. The quantified ratios corresponded well to those obtained by Pyrosequencing. We found that the ratios of homeologs before and after cold stress treatment were highly correlated (r = 0.870). This highlights the presence of nonstochastic polyploid gene regulation despite previous research identifying stochastic variation in expression. Moreover, our new statistical test incorporating overdispersion identified 226 homeologs (1.11% of 20 369 expressed homeologs) with significant ratio changes, many of which were related to stress responses. HomeoRoq would contribute to the study of the genes responsible for polyploid-specific environmental responses.