A new RNASeq-based reference transcriptome for sugar beet and its application in transcriptome-scale analysis of vernalization and gibberellin responses
Holmes, Helen F.
Sugar beet (Beta vulgaris sp. vulgaris) crops account for about 30% of world sugar. Sugar yield is compromised by reproductive growth hence crops must remain vegetative until harvest. Prolonged exposure to cold temperature (vernalization) in the range 6 degrees C to 12 degrees C induces reproductive growth, leading to bolting (rapid elongation of the main stem) and flowering. Spring cultivation of crops in cool temperate climates makes them vulnerable to vernalization and hence bolting, which is initiated in the apical shoot meristem in processes involving interaction between gibberellin (GA) hormones and vernalization. The underlying mechanisms are unknown and genome scale next generation sequencing approaches now offer comprehensive strategies to investigate them; enabling the identification of novel targets for bolting control in sugar beet crops. In this study, we demonstrate the application of an mRNA-Seq based strategy for this purpose.