Genome-wide characterization of post-transcriptional processes related to wood formation in Dalbergia odorifera


BMC Genomics. 2024 Apr 16;25(1):372. doi: 10.1186/s12864-024-10300-7.


BACKGROUND: Alternative polyadenylation (APA), alternative splicing (AS), and long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) play regulatory roles in post-transcriptional processes in plants. However, little is known about their involvement in xylem development in Dalbergia odorifera, a valuable rosewood species with medicinal and commercial significance. We addressed this by conducting Isoform Sequencing (Iso-Seq) using PacBio’s SMRT technology and combined it with RNA-seq analysis (RNA sequencing on Illumina platform) after collecting xylem samples from the transition zone and the sapwood of D. odorifera.

RESULTS: We identified 14,938 full-length transcripts, including 9,830 novel isoforms, which has updated the D. odorifera genome annotation. Our analysis has revealed that 4,164 genes undergo APA, whereas 3,084 genes encounter AS. We have also annotated 118 lncRNAs. Furthermore, RNA-seq analysis identified 170 differential alternative splicing (DAS) events, 344 genes with differential APA site usage (DE-APA), and 6 differentially expressed lncRNAs in the transition zone when compared to the sapwood. AS, APA, and lncRNAs are differentially regulated during xylem development. Differentially expressed APA genes were enriched for terpenoid and flavonoid metabolism, indicating their role in the heartwood formation. Additionally, DE-APA genes were associated with cell wall biosynthesis and terpenoid metabolism, implying an APA’s role in wood formation. A DAS gene (involved in chalcone accumulation) with a significantly greater inclusion of the last exon in the transition zone than in the sapwood was identified. We also found that differentially expressed lncRNAs targeted the genes related to terpene synthesis.

CONCLUSIONS: This study enhances our understanding of the molecular regulatory mechanisms underlying wood formation in D. odorifera, and provides valuable genetic resources and insights for its molecular-assisted breeding.

PMID:38627613 | DOI:10.1186/s12864-024-10300-7