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Research Team Led by Prof. Wu Shuang Publishes a Paper in Science

福建农林大学(英文版)   发布时间: 2024-04-11   信息员:

Solanum lycopersicum is one of the few horticultural plants in the nightshade family (Solanaceae) to transition from chasmogamous to cleistogamous flowering. As wild relatives of tomatoes evolved into the Solanum genus, the structure of their flowers changed, leading to the gradual closure of the anthers producing pollen. Subsequently, as wild tomatoes were domesticated into modern cultivated tomatoes, the structure of tomato flowers underwent further modifications, forming a closed barrel-shaped anther structure that completely envelops the pistil. This transformation allows tomatoes to develop a self-pollinating reproductive structure, significantly increasing their fruit set compared to wild tomatoes. However, the mechanism underpinning the formation of cleistogamous flowering in tomatoes remains elusive.

Recently, FAFU’s research team led by Professor Wu Shuang published a paper titled “HD-Zip proteins modify floral structures for self-pollination in tomato” in Science online. This study elucidates for the first time the molecular mechanism by which plants alter flower structures through the formation of specialized epidermal hairs in tomatoes, thereby changing the pollination process.

This research provides insights into the molecular basis of cleistogamy in modern tomato and suggests targets for improving fruit set and preventing pollen contamination in genetically modified crops.

FAFU’s College of Horticulture and College of Future Technology serve as the primary affiliations. Professor Wu Shuang, from the College of Horticulture and the College of Future Technology at FAFU, is the corresponding author of the paper. The co-first authors of the paper include Dr. Wu Minliang, a postdoctoral research fellow from the College of Horticulture, Bian Xinxin, a graduated student, and Huang Benben, a master degree candidate. This research was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China.

 

Correspondant/Photogragher: Haixia Institute of Science and Technology

Translation: Chen Jun, International College

                    Xie Xinyi, International College


 
 
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