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Dynamic gene amplification and function diversification of grass-specific O-methyltransferase gene family

Liu, Zhen, Fan, Miao, Li, Chao, Xu, Jian-Hong
Genomics 2019 v.111 no.4 pp. 687-695
S-adenosylmethionine, benzoxazinoids, biosynthesis, gene amplification, gene expression, genes, grasses, insect resistance, methyltransferases, phylogeny, roots, secondary metabolites, suberin
The plant O-methyltransferases are dependent on S-Adenosyl-l-methionine, which can catalyze a variety of secondary metabolites. Here we identified different number of OMT genes from the respective grass genomes. Phylogenetic analysis showed that this OMT gene family is a grass-specific gene family that is different from COMT. Most of genes were expanded by tandem and segment duplication after the species split from their progenitor. Furthermore, genes from Group I and two clusters from group II are only present in Panicoideae, which included Bx10 and Bx7 involved in the benzoxazinoids pathway, suggesting these genes could participate in insect resistance in Panicoideae. Gene expression profiles showed that OMT genes were preferentially expressed in vegetative stages, especially in roots. These results revealed that this grass-specific OMT gene family could affect the development of vegetative stages, and be involved in the benzoxazinoids pathway or suberin biosynthesis that was different from COMT.