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Polyploidy underlies co-option and diversification of biosynthetic triterpene pathways in the apple tribe

Su, Wenbing; Jing, Yi; Lin, Shoukai; Yue, Zhen; Yang, Xianghui; Xu, Jiabao; Wu, Jincheng; Zhang, Zhike; Xia, Rui; Zhu, Jiaojiao; An, Ning; Chen, Haixin; Hong, Yanping; Yuan, Yuan; Long, Ting; Zhang, Ling; Jiang, Yuanyuan; Liu, Zongli; Zhang, Hailan; Gao, Yongshun; Liu, Yuexue; Lin, Hailan; Wang, Huicong; Yant, Levi; Lin, Shunquan; Liu, Zhenhua

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Wenbing Su

Yi Jing

Shoukai Lin

Zhen Yue

Xianghui Yang

Jiabao Xu

Jincheng Wu

Zhike Zhang

Rui Xia

Jiaojiao Zhu

Ning An

Haixin Chen

Yanping Hong

Yuan Yuan

Ting Long

Ling Zhang

Yuanyuan Jiang

Zongli Liu

Hailan Zhang

Yongshun Gao

Yuexue Liu

Hailan Lin

Huicong Wang

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Professor of Evolutionary Genomics

Shunquan Lin

Zhenhua Liu


Whole-genome duplication (WGD) plays important roles in plant evolution and function, yet little is known about how WGD underlies metabolic diversification of natural products that bear significant medicinal properties, especially in nonmodel trees. Here, we reveal how WGD laid the foundation for co-option and differentiation of medicinally important ursane triterpene pathway duplicates, generating distinct chemotypes between species and between developmental stages in the apple tribe. After generating chromosome-level assemblies of a widely cultivated loquat variety and Gillenia trifoliata, we define differentially evolved, duplicated gene pathways and date the WGD in the apple tribe at 13.5 to 27.1 Mya, much more recent than previously thought. We then functionally characterize contrasting metabolic pathways responsible for major triterpene biosynthesis in G. trifoliata and loquat, which pre- and postdate the Maleae WGD, respectively. Our work mechanistically details the metabolic diversity that arose post-WGD and provides insights into the genomic basis of medicinal properties of loquat, which has been used in both traditional and modern medicines.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Apr 5, 2021
Online Publication Date May 13, 2021
Publication Date May 18, 2021
Deposit Date Sep 24, 2021
Publicly Available Date Sep 30, 2021
Journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Print ISSN 0027-8424
Electronic ISSN 1091-6490
Publisher National Academy of Sciences
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 118
Issue 20
Article Number e2101767118
Pages 1-11
Public URL
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