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Chromosome painting in meiosis reveals pairing of specific chromosomes in polyploid Solanum species

He, Li, Braz, Guilherme T., Torres, Giovana A., Jiang, Jiming
Chromosoma 2018 v.127 no.4 pp. 505-513
Solanum demissum, Solanum tuberosum, allopolyploidy, autotetraploidy, chromosome painting, chromosome pairing, chromosomes, genetic similarity, hexaploidy, meiosis, metaphase, pachytene stage, potatoes
Analysis of chromosome pairing has been an important tool to assess the genetic similarity of homologous and homoeologous chromosomes in polyploids. However, it is technically challenging to monitor the pairing of specific chromosomes in polyploid species, especially for plant species with a large number of small chromosomes. We developed oligonucleotide-based painting probes for four different potato chromosomes. We demonstrate that these probes are robust enough to monitor a single chromosome throughout the prophase I of meiosis in polyploid Solanum species. Cultivated potato (Solanum tuberosum, 2n = 4x = 48) is an autotetraploid. We demonstrate that the four copies of each potato chromosome pair as a quadrivalent in 66–78% of the meiotic cells at the pachytene stage. Solanum demissum (2n = 6x = 72) is a hexaploid and has been controversial regarding its nature as an autopolyploid or allopolyploid. Interestingly, no hexavalent pairing was observed in meiosis. Instead, we observed three independent bivalents in 83–98% of the meiotic cells at late diakinesis and early metaphase I for the four chromosomes. These results suggest that S. demissum has evolved into a cytologically stable state with predominantly bivalent pairing in meiosis.