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Polymorphic Microsatellite Markers for the Tetrapolar Anther-Smut Fungus Microbotryum saponariae Based on Genome Sequencing

Abstract : Background: Anther-smut fungi belonging to the genus Microbotryum sterilize their host plants by aborting ovaries and replacing pollen by fungal spores. Sibling Microbotryum species are highly specialized on their host plants and they have been widely used as models for studies of ecology and evolution of plant pathogenic fungi. However, most studies have focused, so far, on M. lychnidis-dioicae that parasitizes the white campion Silene latifolia. Microbotryum saponariae, parasitizing mainly Saponaria officinalis, is an interesting anther-smut fungus, since it belongs to a tetrapolar lineage (i.e., with two independently segregating mating-type loci), while most of the anther-smut Microbotryum fungi are bipolar (i.e., with a single mating-type locus). Saponaria officinalis is a widespread long-lived perennial plant species with multiple flowering stems, which makes its anther-smut pathogen a good model for studying phylogeography and within-host multiple infections. Principal Findings: Here, based on a generated genome sequence of M. saponariae we developed 6 multiplexes with a total of 22 polymorphic microsatellite markers using an inexpensive and efficient method. We scored these markers in fungal individuals collected from 97 populations across Europe, and found that the number of their alleles ranged from 2 to 11, and their expected heterozygosity from 0.01 to 0.58. Cross-species amplification was examined using nine other Microbotryum species parasitizing hosts belonging to Silene, Dianthus and Knautia genera. All loci were successfully amplified in at least two other Microbotryum species. Significance: These newly developed markers will provide insights into the population genetic structure and the occurrence of within-host multiple infections of M. saponariae. In addition, the draft genome of M. saponariae, as well as one of the described markers will be useful resources for studying the evolution of the breeding systems in the genus Microbotryum and the evolution of specialization onto different plant species.
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Taiadjana M. Fortuna, Alodie Snirc, Hélène Badouin, Jerome Gouzy, Sophie Siguenza, et al.. Polymorphic Microsatellite Markers for the Tetrapolar Anther-Smut Fungus Microbotryum saponariae Based on Genome Sequencing. PLoS ONE, Public Library of Science, 2016, 11 (11), pp.e0165656. ⟨10.1371/journal.pone.0165656⟩. ⟨hal-01429254⟩

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