TaMSH7: A cereal mismatch repair gene that affects fertility in transgenic barley (Hordeum vulgare L.)

Andrew H Lloyd, Andrew S. Milligan, Peter Langridge, Jason A. Able

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BACKGROUND: Chromosome pairing, recombination and DNA repair are essential processes during meiosis in sexually reproducing organisms. Investigating the bread wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) Ph2 (Pairing homoeologous) locus has identified numerous candidate genes that may have a role in controlling such processes, including TaMSH7, a plant specific member of the DNA mismatch repair family.

RESULTS: Sequencing of the three MSH7 genes, located on the short arms of wheat chromosomes 3A, 3B and 3D, has revealed no significant sequence divergence at the amino acid level suggesting conservation of function across the homoeogroups. Functional analysis of MSH7 through the use of RNAi loss-of-function transgenics was undertaken in diploid barley (Hordeum vulgare L.). Quantitative real-time PCR revealed several T0 lines with reduced MSH7 expression. Positive segregants from two T1 lines studied in detail showed reduced MSH7 expression when compared to transformed controls and null segregants. Expression of MSH6, another member of the mismatch repair family which is most closely related to the MSH7 gene, was not significantly reduced in these lines. In both T1 lines, reduced seed set in positive segregants was observed.

CONCLUSION: Results presented here indicate, for the first time, a distinct functional role for MSH7 in vivo and show that expression of this gene is necessary for wild-type levels of fertility. These observations suggest that MSH7 has an important function during meiosis and as such remains a candidate for Ph2.

Original languageEnglish
Article number67
JournalBMC Plant Biology
Publication statusPublished - 20 Dec 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Base Sequence
  • DNA Mismatch Repair
  • Diploidy
  • Fertility/genetics
  • Genome, Plant
  • Hordeum/genetics
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Mutation
  • Plant Proteins/genetics
  • Plants, Genetically Modified/genetics
  • RNA Interference
  • Seeds/genetics
  • Sequence Homology, Amino Acid
  • Triticum/genetics
  • bread what
  • genome copy
  • RNAi construct
  • golden promise
  • transgenic barley


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