Sharka disease, caused by Plum pox virus (PPV), is the most important viral disease affecting Prunus species. A major PPV resistance locus (PPVres) has been mapped to the upper part of apricot (Prunus armeniaca) linkage group 1. In this study, a physical map of the PPVres locus in the PPV-resistant cultivar 'Goldrich' was constructed. Bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) clones belonging to the resistant haplotype contig were sequenced using 454/GS-FLX Titanium technology. Concurrently, the whole genome of seven apricot varieties (three PPV-resistant and four PPV-susceptible) and two PPV-susceptible apricot relatives (P.sibirica var. davidiana and P.mume) were obtained using the Illumina-HiSeq2000 platform. Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) within the mapped interval, recorded from alignments against the peach genome, allowed us to narrow down the PPVres locus to a region of ∼196kb. Searches for polymorphisms linked in coupling with the resistance led to the identification of 68 variants within 23 predicted transcripts according to peach genome annotation. Candidate resistance genes were ranked combining data from variant calling and predicted functions inferred from sequence homology. Together, the results suggest that members of a cluster of meprin and TRAF-C homology domain (MATHd)-containing proteins are the most likely candidate genes for PPV resistance in apricot. Interestingly, MATHd proteins are hypothesized to control long-distance movement (LDM) of potyviruses in Arabidopsis, and restriction for LDM is also a major component of PPV resistance in apricot. Although the PPV resistance gene(s) remains to be unambiguously identified, these results pave the way to the determination of the underlying mechanism and to the development of more accurate breeding strategies.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology
- Agronomy and Crop Science
- Soil Science
- Plant Science