Campus Units

Zoology, Agronomy

Document Type

Article

Publication Version

Published Version

Publication Date

3-2003

Journal or Book Title

Genetics

Volume

163

Issue

3

First Page

1135

Last Page

1146

Abstract

We have characterized Unstable factor for orange1 (Ufo1), a dominant, allele-specific modifier of expression of the maize pericarp color1 (p1) gene. The p1 gene encodes an Myb-homologous transcriptional activator of genes required for biosynthesis of red phlobaphene pigments. The P1-wr allele specifies colorless kernel pericarp and red cobs, whereas Ufo1 modifies P1-wr expression to confer pigmentation in kernel pericarp, as well as vegetative tissues, which normally do not accumulate significant amounts of phlobaphene pigments. In the presence of Ufo1, P1-wr transcript levels and transcription rate are increased in kernel pericarp. The P1-wr allele contains approximately six p1 gene copies present in a hypermethylated and multicopy tandem array. In P1-wr Ufo1 plants, methylation of P1-wr DNA sequences is reduced, whereas the methylation state of other repetitive genomic sequences was not detectably affected. The phenotypes produced by the interaction of P1-wr and Ufo1 are unstable, exhibiting somatic mosaicism and variable penetrance. Moreover, the changes in P1-wr expression and methylation are not heritable: meiotic segregants that lack Ufo1 revert to the normal P1-wr expression and methylation patterns. These results demonstrate the existence of a class of modifiers of gene expression whose effects are associated with transient changes in DNA methylation of specific loci.

Comments

This article is from Genetics 163 (2003): 1135.

Rights

Works produced by employees of the U.S. Government as part of their official duties are not copyrighted within the U.S. The content of this document is not copyrighted.

Language

en

File Format

application/pdf