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1.  Polyploidization Altered Gene Functions in Cotton (Gossypium spp.) 
PLoS ONE  2010;5(12):e14351.
Cotton (Gossypium spp.) is an important crop plant that is widely grown to produce both natural textile fibers and cottonseed oil. Cotton fibers, the economically more important product of the cotton plant, are seed trichomes derived from individual cells of the epidermal layer of the seed coat. It has been known for a long time that large numbers of genes determine the development of cotton fiber, and more recently it has been determined that these genes are distributed across At and Dt subgenomes of tetraploid AD cottons. In the present study, the organization and evolution of the fiber development genes were investigated through the construction of an integrated genetic and physical map of fiber development genes whose functions have been verified and confirmed. A total of 535 cotton fiber development genes, including 103 fiber transcription factors, 259 fiber development genes, and 173 SSR-contained fiber ESTs, were analyzed at the subgenome level. A total of 499 fiber related contigs were selected and assembled. Together these contigs covered about 151 Mb in physical length, or about 6.7% of the tetraploid cotton genome. Among the 499 contigs, 397 were anchored onto individual chromosomes. Results from our studies on the distribution patterns of the fiber development genes and transcription factors between the At and Dt subgenomes showed that more transcription factors were from Dt subgenome than At, whereas more fiber development genes were from At subgenome than Dt. Combining our mapping results with previous reports that more fiber QTLs were mapped in Dt subgenome than At subgenome, the results suggested a new functional hypothesis for tetraploid cotton. After the merging of the two diploid Gossypium genomes, the At subgenome has provided most of the genes for fiber development, because it continues to function similar to its fiber producing diploid A genome ancestor. On the other hand, the Dt subgenome, with its non-fiber producing D genome ancestor, provides more transcription factors that regulate the expression of the fiber genes in the At subgenome. This hypothesis would explain previously published mapping results. At the same time, this integrated map of fiber development genes would provide a framework to clone individual full-length fiber genes, to elucidate the physiological mechanisms of the fiber differentiation, elongation, and maturation, and to systematically study the functional network of these genes that interact during the process of fiber development in the tetraploid cottons.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0014351
PMCID: PMC3002935  PMID: 21179551
2.  An integrated genetic and physical map of homoeologous chromosomes 12 and 26 in Upland cotton (G. hirsutum L.) 
BMC Genomics  2008;9:108.
Background
Upland cotton (G. hirsutum L.) is the leading fiber crop worldwide. Genetic improvement of fiber quality and yield is facilitated by a variety of genomics tools. An integrated genetic and physical map is needed to better characterize quantitative trait loci and to allow for the positional cloning of valuable genes. However, developing integrated genomic tools for complex allotetraploid genomes, like that of cotton, is highly experimental. In this report, we describe an effective approach for developing an integrated physical framework that allows for the distinguishing between subgenomes in cotton.
Results
A physical map has been developed with 220 and 115 BAC contigs for homeologous chromosomes 12 and 26, respectively, covering 73.49 Mb and 34.23 Mb in physical length. Approximately one half of the 220 contigs were anchored to the At subgenome only, while 48 of the 115 contigs were allocated to the Dt subgenome only. Between the two chromosomes, 67 contigs were shared with an estimated overall physical similarity between the two chromosomal homeologs at 40.0 %. A total of 401 fiber unigenes plus 214 non-fiber unigenes were located to chromosome 12 while 207 fiber unigenes plus 183 non-fiber unigenes were allocated to chromosome 26. Anchoring was done through an overgo hybridization approach and all anchored ESTs were functionally annotated via blast analysis.
Conclusion
This integrated genomic map describes the first pair of homoeologous chromosomes of an allotetraploid genome in which BAC contigs were identified and partially separated through the use of chromosome-specific probes and locus-specific genetic markers. The approach used in this study should prove useful in the construction of genome-wide physical maps for polyploid plant genomes including Upland cotton. The identification of Gene-rich islands in the integrated map provides a platform for positional cloning of important genes and the targeted sequencing of specific genomic regions.
doi:10.1186/1471-2164-9-108
PMCID: PMC2270834  PMID: 18307816

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