Indexed on: 21 Mar '06Published on: 21 Mar '06Published in: Journal of experimental botany
The natural variation in leaf and plant longevity in Arabidopsis thaliana was analysed in a set of 45 ecotypes and 155 recombinant inbred lines derived from a Cape Verde Islands (Cvi) x Landsberg erecta (Ler) cross. Post-bolting longevity was inversely related to time to flowering and rosette leaf number in the set of 45 ecotypes, with Cvi having the longest and Ler the shortest post-bolting longevity. The recombinant inbred line population was tested under low or high soil nutrient levels (LN or HN, respectively). Three quantitative trait loci (QTL), one in chromosome 3 and two in chromosomes 1 and 5, were associated with longevity of the 6th rosette leaf under LN and HN, respectively. Four QTL for post-bolting longevity were found in chromosomes 1, 3, 4, and 5, and two in chromosomes 1 and 5 under LN and HN, respectively. An epistatic interaction affecting post-bolting longevity under LN, but not HN, was detected. Ler and Cvi carry a mix of increasing and decreasing alleles for the QTL affecting longevity of the 6th leaf and post-bolting longevity. Longevity of the 6th rosette leaf was associated with different QTL than post-bolting longevity, and it was affected by different QTL depending on nutrient availability. By contrast, the major QTL affecting post-bolting longevity exerted significant effects irrespective of soil nutrient availability.