Summary A symbiotic mutant of Lotus japonicus, called sunergos1-1 (suner1-1), originated from a har1-1 suppressor screen. suner1-1 supports epidermal infection by Mesorhizobium loti and initiates cell divisions for organogenesis of nodule primordia. However, these processes appear to be temporarily stalled early during symbiotic interaction, leading to a low nodule number phenotype. This defect is ephemeral and near wild-type nodule numbers are reached by suner1-1 at a later point after infection. Using an approach that combined map-based cloning and next-generation sequencing we have identified the causative mutation and show that the suner1-1 phenotype is determined by a weak recessive allele, with the corresponding wild-type SUNER1 locus encoding a predicted subunit A of a DNA topoisomerase VI. Our data suggest that at least one function of SUNER1 during symbiosis is to participate in endoreduplication, which is an essential step during normal differentiation of functional, nitrogen-fixing nodules.
- Lotus japonicus