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Quantitative genetic analysis of auxin-driven growth in Arabidopsis Thaliana

Wright, Jennifer (2017) Quantitative genetic analysis of auxin-driven growth in Arabidopsis Thaliana. MSc by research thesis, University of York.

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Abstract

Growth and development in plants displays genetic complexity differently controlled by discrete environmental stimuli. The Arabidopsis thaliana hypocotyl is a useful model system for studying growth due to its simplicity. The hypocotyl elongates in response to a wide range of stimuli, including the phytohormone auxin. Auxin is a major regulator of growth and development with a role in every stage of a plant’s life cycle. Previous work has shown that exogenous auxin can increase hypocotyl length in some cases, but decrease it in others. In this dissertation, I wanted to investigate the growth response to auxin in two ways. I added exogenous auxin, and increased auxin levels naturally by growing plants at warm temperatures. I also investigated the effect of the mutation hsp90.2-3 on hypocotyl growth. This mutation increases hypocotyl length and reveals cryptic genetic variation within a plant. I studied the effect of auxin and the mutation on growth using a quantitative genetic approach. I investigated growth using QTL analysis. This technique uses naturally occurring variation in a population to detect regions of the genome which influence a certain trait. It is useful for studying a trait like growth, which is controlled by many genes of small effect. I detected many QTL using this technique, including one which has a role in controlling growth and variation under several tested conditions. I also detected QTL that work through epistatic interactions. Some QTL control a change in hypocotyl length in response to a specific stimulus. Overall, I have studied the genetic basis of growth in several conditions and examined the change in hypocotyl length and variation in hypocotyl length due to changes in temperature and exogenous auxin. I envisage that the genetic architecture I reported will aid future studies into the way warmth and auxin affect growth and variation in plants.

Item Type: Thesis (MSc by research)
Keywords: QTL mapping, Quantitative genetic analysis, Arabidopsis Thaliana, Hypocotyl, Auxin, Phytohormones, Heat shock proteins, Genetics, Biology
Academic Units: The University of York > Biology (York)
Depositing User: Miss Jennifer Wright
Date Deposited: 11 Jun 2018 09:14
Last Modified: 11 Jun 2018 09:14
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/19833

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