Characterization of a chestnut FLORICAULA/LEAFY homologous gene
The FLORICAULA/LEAFY (FLO/LFY) homologues’ genes are necessary for normal flower development and play a key role in diverse angiosperm species. In this paper, an orthologue of FLORICAULA/LEAFY, CmLFY (chestnut FLO/LFY), was isolated from the inflorescence of chestnut trees. Its expression was detected in various tissues. Furthermore, the flowering effectiveness of the gene was assessed with transgenic Arabidopsis. CmLFY protein showed a high degree of similarity to PEAFLO (78%), which is a homologue of FLO/LFY from pea. RT-PCR analysis showed that, CmLFY expressed at high levels in inflorescences, but not in young leaves, fruits or stems. The transgenic Arabidopsis with over-expressed CmLFY showed accelerated flowering, which supports that CmLFY encodes a functional orthologue of the FLORICAULA/LEAFY genes of angiosperms despite its sequence divergence. These results suggest that CmLFY is involved in inflorescence development in chestnut.
Key words: Chestnut, homologue, FLORICAULA/LEAFY