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Abstract Detail

Recent Topics Posters

Orduño-Baez , Amy Karina [1], Ramadoss, Niveditha [2], Flores-Renteria, Lluvia [2].

The cellular process behind unisexual flower development in Cylindropuntia wolfii.

Although most plants are hermaphrodites, unisexuality  has evolved independently multiple times in evolutionary history as a preventative measure to selfing. There are two major pathways that drive unisexuality in plants, 1) Sterility and 2) Inception. It has been found that sterility can be attributed to Programmed Cell Death (PCD), a process of cell suicide known to control the developmental process in flowering plants. As the family of Cactaceae has wide polymorphism in sexual systems, this  was considered an ideal model to study sexual reproduction in plants. Cylindropuntia wolfii has been reported as gynodioecious meaning having populations with female and hermaphrodite plants. However, in 2017 we identified some individuals with aborted ovules, leading to more unanswered questions about C. wolfii’s sexual system. Our main goal is to accurately identify the sexual system of  C. wolfii and understand the cellular mechanisms leading to that system. We predict that C. wolfii will be functionally dioecious driven by PCD. We have used histological approaches to confirm the sexual development and have found individuals with functional male and individuals with functional female flowers, suggesting C. wolfii has a functional dioecious system.  TUNEL assay will be conducted to detect DNA fragmentation in male  and female ovules and anthers to evaluate the role of PCD as the mechanism driving unisexuality in C. wolfii. By analyzing the cellular mechanism that determines sexual separation in  C. wolfii we will have a greater understanding of the evolution of unisexuality and can apply it to the conservation of this endemic cactus.

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1 - San Diego State University, Biology
2 - San Diego State University , Biology, 5500 Campanile Dr., San Diego, CA, 92182, USA

flower development
sex evolution
programmed cell death.

Presentation Type:
Session: P, Recent Topics Posters
Location: Arizona Ballroom/Starr Pass
Date: Monday, July 29th, 2019
Time: 5:30 PM
Number: PRT017
Abstract ID:1390
Candidate for Awards:None

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