ECHENIQUE Carmen Viviana
Evaluation of different methods for assessing the reproductive mode of weeping lovegrass plants, Eragrostis curvula (Schrad.) Nees
MEIER, M.; ZAPPACOSTA, D.; SELVA, J.P.; PESSINO, S.; ECHENIQUE V
AUSTRALIAN JOURNAL OF BOTANY
Lugar: Collingwood, Vic. ; Año: 2011 vol. 59 p. 253 - 261
Weeping lovegrass is a forage grass cultivated in semiarid regions of the world that reproduces mainly by apomixis (diplospory), a process that involves the formation of asexual seeds and bypasses the processes of meiosis and fertilisation. The aim of this work was to evaluate and compare different techniques (cytoembryology, callose deposition, flow cytometry and progeny tests) to determine the reproductive mode of weeping lovegrass. Typical sexual and apomictic processes were clearly differentiated using cytoembryology, and different callose deposition patterns were observed in sexual and apomictic genotypes. Previous studies indicated that presence of callose on the cell wall of the megaspore mother cell is associated only with sexual processes. Nevertheless, our results also found callose deposition in apomictic genotypes,although clearly different from the pattern found in sexual processes, allowing discrimination between sexual and apomictic plants. Flow cytometry seed screening using individual seeds did not differentiate between sexual and apomictic plants as the embryo : endosperm DNA content ratio was similar in sexual and apomictic plants. Progeny tests using molecular markers showed uniform patterns in offspring from apomictic plants and variable patterns among the progeny of sexual plants. The results obtained from cytological studies and progeny tests were similar, indicating that both methods provide useful tools for determination of reproductive mode. However, the callose test with aniline blue was faster and easier to use than other techniques.