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Molecular Evolution and Local Root Heterogeneous Expression of the Chenopodium quinoa ARF Genes Provide Insights into the Adaptive Domestication of Crops in Complex Environments
Journal of Molecular Evolution  (IF2.395),  Pub Date : 2021-03-23, DOI: 10.1007/s00239-021-10005-5
Wenjun Sun, Haomiao Yu, Zhaotang Ma, Yuan Yuan, Sijiao Wang, Jun Yan, Xinran Xu, Hui Chen

Auxin response factors (ARFs) influence plant growth and development via the coupling of basic biological processes. However, the evolution, expansion, and regulatory mechanisms of ARFs in the domesticated crop quinoa after artificial selection remain elusive. In this study, we systematically identified 30 Chenopodium quinoa ARFs (CqARFs). In this typical domesticated crop, ARFs divided into three subfamilies are subjected to strong purification selection and have a highly conserved evolutionary pattern. Polyploidy is the primary reason for the expansion of the ARF family after quinoa domestication. The expression patterns of CqARFs in different tissues have been differentiated, and CqARF2, 5, 9 and 10 from class A have the characteristics of local heterogeneous expression in different regions of roots, which may be the key factors for crops to respond in complex environments. Overall, we examined the evolution and expansion of ARFs in representative domesticated crops using the genome, transcriptome, and molecular biology and discovered a class A ARF-centered heterogeneous expression network that played an important role in auxin signaling and environmental responses. We provide new insights into how ARFs promote domesticated crop adaptation to artificial selection by polyploid expansion.