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Identification of the pollen self-incompatibility determinant in Papaver rhoeas

Wheeler, Michael J., De Graaf, Barend H. J. ORCID:, Hadjiosif, Natalie, Perry, Ruth M., Poulter, Natalie S., Osman, Kim, Vatovec, Sabina, Harper, Andrea, Franklin, F. Christopher H. and Franklin-Tong, Veronica E. 2009. Identification of the pollen self-incompatibility determinant in Papaver rhoeas. Nature 459 (7249) , 992 -995. 10.1038/nature08027

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Higher plants produce seed through pollination, using specific interactions between pollen and pistil. Self-incompatibility is an important mechanism used in many species to prevent inbreeding; it is controlled by a multi-allelic S locus1, 2. ‘Self’ (incompatible) pollen is discriminated from ‘non-self’ (compatible) pollen by interaction of pollen and pistil S locus components, and is subsequently inhibited. In Papaver rhoeas, the pistil S locus product is a small protein that interacts with incompatible pollen, triggering a Ca2+-dependent signalling network, resulting in pollen inhibition and programmed cell death3, 4, 5, 6, 7. Here we have cloned three alleles of a highly polymorphic pollen-expressed gene, PrpS (Papaver rhoeas pollen S), from Papaver and provide evidence that this encodes the pollen S locus determinant. PrpS is a single-copy gene linked to the pistil S gene (currently called S, but referred to hereafter as PrsS for Papaver rhoeas stigma S determinant). Sequence analysis indicates that PrsS and PrpS are equally ancient and probably co-evolved. PrpS encodes a novel ~20-kDa protein. Consistent with predictions that it is a transmembrane protein, PrpS is associated with the plasma membrane. We show that a predicted extracellular loop segment of PrpS interacts with PrsS and, using PrpS antisense oligonucleotides, we demonstrate that PrpS is involved in S-specific inhibition of incompatible pollen. Identification of PrpS represents a major advance in our understanding of the Papaver self-incompatibility system. As a novel cell–cell recognition determinant it contributes to the available information concerning the origins and evolution of cell–cell recognition systems involved in discrimination between self and non-self, which also include histocompatibility systems in primitive chordates and vertebrates.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Biosciences
Subjects: Q Science > QH Natural history > QH301 Biology
Publisher: Nature Publishing Group
ISSN: 0028-0836
Last Modified: 10 May 2023 19:38

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