First TILLING Platform in Cucurbita pepo: A New Mutant Resource for Gene Function and Crop Improvement

Autores UPV
Revista PLoS ONE


Although the availability of genetic and genomic resources for Cucurbita pepo has increased significantly, functional genomic resources are still limited for this crop. In this direction, we have developed a high throughput reverse genetic tool: the first TILLING (Targeting Induced Local Lesions IN Genomes) resource for this species. Additionally, we have used this resource to demonstrate that the previous EMS mutant population we developed has the highest mutation density compared with other cucurbits mutant populations. The overall mutation density in this first C. pepo TILLING platform was estimated to be 1/133 Kb by screening five additional genes. In total, 58 mutations confirmed by sequencing were identified in the five targeted genes, thirteen of which were predicted to have an impact on the function of the protein. The genotype/phenotype correlation was studied in a peroxidase gene, revealing that the phenotype of seedling homozygous for one of the isolated mutant alleles was albino. These results indicate that the TILLING approach in this species was successful at providing new mutations and can address the major challenge of linking sequence information to biological function and also the identification of novel variation for crop breeding.