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Allopolyploidy, which involves genome doubling of an interspecific hybrid is an important mechanism of abrupt speciation in flowering plants [1-6]. Recent studies show that allopolyploid formation is accompanied by extensive changes to patterns of parental gene expression ("transcriptome shock") [7-15] and that this is likely the consequence of(More)
Angiosperm stigmas have long been known to exhibit high levels of peroxidase activity when they are mature and most receptive to pollen but the biological function of stigma peroxidases is not known. A novel stigma-specific class III peroxidase gene, SSP (stigma-specific peroxidase) expressed exclusively in the stigmas of Senecio squalidus L. (Asteraceae)(More)
Self-incompatibility (SI) in Brassica species is controlled by a single polymorphic locus (S) with multiple specificities. Two stigmatically expressed genes that have been cloned from this region encode the S locus glycoprotein (SLG) and S receptor kinase (SRK). Both appear to be essential for the operation of SI. It is believed that rejection of(More)
Polyploidy, or the presence of two or more diploid parental genome sets within an organism, is found to an amazing degree in higher plants. In addition, many plant species traditionally considered to be diploid have recently been demonstrated to have undergone rounds of genome duplication in the past and are now referred to as paleopolyploids. Polyploidy(More)
Even though Darwin's "On the Origin of Species" implied selection being the main driver of species formation, the role of natural selection in speciation remains poorly understood. In particular, it remains unclear how selection at a few genes can lead to genomewide divergence and the formation of distinct species. We used a particularly attractive(More)
Environmental or geological changes can create new niches that drive ecological species divergence without the immediate cessation of gene flow. However, few such cases have been characterized. On a recently formed volcano, Mt. Etna, Senecio aethnensis and S. chrysanthemifolius inhabit contrasting environments of high and low altitude, respectively. They(More)
We recently estimated that as few as six S alleles represent the extent of S locus diversity in a British population of the self-incompatible (SI) coloniser Senecio squalidus (Oxford Ragwort). Despite the predicted constraints to mating imposed by such a low number of S alleles, S. squalidus maintains a strong sporophytic self-incompatibility (SSI) system(More)
BACKGROUND AND AIMS Orobanche minor is a root-holoparasitic angiosperm that attacks a wide range of host species, including a number of commonly cultivated crops. The extent to which genetic divergence among natural populations of O. minor is influenced by host specificity has not been determined previously. Here, the host specificity of natural populations(More)
Knowledge of the genetic basis of phenotypic divergence between species and how such divergence is caused and maintained is crucial to an understanding of speciation and the generation of biodiversity. The hybrid zone between Senecio aethnensis and S. chrysanthemifolius on Mount Etna, Sicily, provides a well-studied example of species divergence in response(More)