The characteristic of Arachis duranensis-specific genes and their potential function.
Song Hui, Sun Juan, Yang Guofeng
Arachis species produce flowers aerially, and then grow into the ground, where they develop into fruits; a feature that is unique to Arachis species. We hypothesized that Arachis species evolved genes specifically involved in the control of aerial flowers and the formation of underground fruits. Arachis duranensis is more resistant to biotic and abiotic stressors. Here, we compared different legume species and identified Arachis duranensis-specific genes. We analyzed gene expression patterns, base substitution patterns and sequence features between genes that are conserved across legume plants and A. duranensis-specific genes. Furthermore, we tested the role of A. duranensis-specific genes during seed development, response to nematode Meloidogyne arenaria infection and drought stress. We found that A. duranensis-specific genes had characteristics of young genes. The gene expression level and breadth were lower in the A. duranensis-specific genes compared to conserved genes. The A. duranensis-specific genes had higher codon usage bias than conserved genes, and the polypeptide length and GC content at the three codon sites were lower compared to conserved genes. Of the A. duranensis-specific genes, single-copy and duplicated genes had different features. The RNA-seq result showed A. duranensis-specific genes were involved in seed development, as well as response to nematode infection and drought stress. In addition, we detected asymmetric functions in A. duranensis-specific duplicated genes in response to nematode infection and drought stress.