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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Comparative Genomic Analyses of Asparagus Officinalis L.

Authors
item Kuhl, Joseph - MICHIGAN STATE UNIV
item Sink, Kenneth - MICHIGAN STATE UNIV
item Havey, Michael
item Martin, William - BALL SEED CO CHICAGO IL
item Cheung, Foo - THE INST FOR GEN RES MD
item Yuan, Qiaoping - THE INST FOR GEN RES MD
item Town, Chris - THE INST FOR GEN RES MD
item Landherr, Lena - PENNSYLVANIA STATE UNIV
item Hu, Li - PENNSYLVANIA STATE UNIV
item Leebens-Mack, James - PENNSYLVANIA STATE UNIV

Submitted to: Genome
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: June 12, 2005
Publication Date: December 8, 2005
Citation: Kuhl, J.C., Sink, K.C., Havey, M.J., Martin, W.J., Cheung, F., Yuan, Q., Town, C.D., Landherr, L., Hu, L., Leebens-Mack, J. 2005. Comparative genomic analyses of asparagus officinalis L. Genome. 48:1052-1060.

Interpretive Summary: Garden asparagus (Asparagus officinalis L.) belongs to the monocot family Asparagaceae in the order Asparagales. The class Commelinanae, which contains the grasses, and the order Asparagales are strongly supported sister groups in the monocots. Onion (Allium cepa L.) and A. officinalis are the most economically important plants in the Higher Asparagales, a strongly supported group within the Asparagales. We assessed the content of asparagus DNA that carries genes and compared it to Lycoris and onion (both in the Higher Asparagales), the grasses, the basal monocot Acorus, and selected eudicots. Although expressed regions in A. officinalis had a higher average Guanine-Cytosine content than Lycoris and onion, all three were clearly lower than the grasses. The genus Asparagus contains a Southern African group of species with some of the smallest known amounts of DNA among all plants in the Asparagales. Garden asparagus has nearly twice the DNA of the Southern African species, suggestive of a genome doubling. We cloned and sequenced DNA from garden asparagus and the southern African species A. plumosus and observed no clear evidence for a recent DNA doubling in garden asparagus relative to A. plumosus. These results indicate that asparagus could be an important genomic model for the order Asparagales and will be useful for plant breeders and geneticists working on important monocot plants outside of the grasses

Technical Abstract: Garden asparagus (Asparagus officinalis L.) belongs to the monocot family Asparagaceae in the order Asparagales. The class Commelinanae, which contains the grasses, and the order Asparagales are strongly supported sister clades in the monocots. Onion (Allium cepa L.) and A. officinalis are the most economically important plants in the Higher Asparagales, a monophyletic group within the Asparagales. Coding regions in onion have lower GC contents than the grasses. We assessed the GC content of A. officinalis coding regions and compared it to Lycoris and onion (both in the Higher Asparagales), the grasses, the basal monocot Acorus, and selected eudicots. Although expressed regions in A. officinalis had a higher average GC content than Lycoris and onion, all three were clearly lower than the grasses. The genus Asparagus contains a Southern African clade with diploid species that have some of the smallest known genomes in the Asparagales. Asparagus officinalis and other diploid members of a Eurasian Asparagus clade have genomes that are nearly twice the Southern African species. This pattern of variation in genome size is suggestive of polyploidization early in the history of the Eurasian Asparagus clade. We cloned and sequenced genomic amplicons from A. officinalis and the southern African species A. plumosus and observed no clear evidence for a recent genome doubling in A. officinalis relative to A. plumosus.

Last Modified: 10/25/2014
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