Study reveals rice genes involved in hybrid sterility

Fertility-fighting versions of three genes at the same genetic locus contribute to hybrid sterility in plants produced by crossing two popular rice sub-species, according to a study appearing online today in Science.

Researchers from Huazhong Agricultural University and Chinese University of Hong Kong used gene sequencing, genotyping, and other strategies to delve into the genetics of hybrid sterility in the offspring of rice (Oryza sativa) crosses between japonica and indica sub-species. Their analyses suggest that a trio of genes within a shared locus in the rice genome participate in an antagonistic “killer-protective” system that impacts spore formation in female plants and influences gene segregation ratios.

View the original article here: Study reveals rice genes involved in hybrid sterility

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