Authors: BAŞAK ÖZDEMİR, FATMA YEŞİM OKAY, GÖLGE SARIKAMIŞ, CANAN YÜKSEL ÖZMEN, UMUT KİBAR, ALİ ERGÜL
Abstract: Almond production is usually affected by late spring frosts. Late flowering is an important trait in almond production in order to avoid frost damage. Breeding for late flowering has always been an important objective in almond breeding programs. Utilising molecular approaches may guide and accelerate breeding programs. In the present study, the expressions of the Prunus persica FLOWERING LOCUS T (PpFT) and Prunus armeniaca SUPPRESSOR OF OVEREXPRESSION OF CONSTANS1 (PabSOC1) genes known as floral integrators that promote flowering in plants were determined in almonds (Amygdalus spp.). Frost tolerance is another important trait in almond production. Almond accessions may vary in terms of frost tolerance. The expressions of Prunus dulcis C-repeat-binding factors (PdCBF1) and (PdCBF2) genes that are the major components in the cold responsive network of plants were studied in almonds. Real time PCR analysis of buds revealed the differential expression pattern of PpFT, PabSOC1, PdCBF1, PdCBF2 genes. The expressions of PpFT and PabSOC1 correlated with each other. Similarly, the expressions of PdCBF1 and PdCBF2 genes revealed a similar expression pattern in almonds. However, the expression of flowering genes were inversely correlated with the cold response genes in most of the almond accessions. This finding revealed the crosstalk between flowering integrator genes and cold responsive genes in controlling flowering in almonds.
Keywords: Almond, Amygdalus spp., flowering, cold, gene expression
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