Comparative transcriptional profiling and preliminary study on heterosis mechanism of super-hybrid rice

Heterosis is a biological phenomenon whereby the offspring from two parents show improved and superior performance than either inbred parental lines. Hybrid rice is one of the most successful apotheoses in crops utilizing heterosis. Transcriptional profiling of F(1) super-hybrid rice Liangyou-2186 and its parents by serial analysis of gene expression (SAGE) revealed 1183 differentially expressed genes (DGs), among which DGs were found significantly enriched in pathways such as photosynthesis and carbon-fixation, and most of the key genes involved in the carbon-fixation pathway exhibited up-regulated expression in F(1) hybrid rice. Moreover, increased catabolic activity of corresponding enzymes and photosynthetic efficiency were also detected, which combined to indicate that carbon fixation is enhanced in F(1) hybrid, and might probably be associated with the yield vigor and heterosis in super-hybrid rice. By correlating DGs with yield-related quantitative trait loci (QTL), a potential relationship between differential gene expression and phenotypic changes was also found. In addition, a regulatory network involving circadian-rhythms and light signaling pathways was also found, as previously reported in Arabidopsis, which suggest that such a network might also be related with heterosis in hybrid rice. Altogether, the present study provides another view for understanding the molecular mechanism underlying heterosis in rice.


G.S. Song, H.L. Zhai, Y.G. Peng and others
Publication data (text): 
2010; 3 (6): 1012-1025
Published in: 
Molecular Plant
Date of publication: 
August, 2010
Status of the publication: