Molecular mechanism underlying pseudopeloria in Habenaria radiata (Orchidaceae)

Mai Mitoma, Yumi Kajino, Risa Hayashi, Miyako Endo, Shosei Kubota, Akira Kanno

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Habenaria radiata (Orchidaceae) has two whorls of perianth, comprising three greenish sepals, two white petals and one lip (labellum). By contrast, the pseudopeloric (with a decreased degree of zygomorphy) mutant cultivar of H. radiata, ‘Hishou’, has changes in the identities of the dorsal sepal to a petaloid organ and the two ventral sepals to lip-like organs. Here, we isolated four DEFICIENS-like and two AGL6-like genes from H. radiata, and characterized their expression. Most of these genes revealed similar expression patterns in the wild type and in the ‘Hishou’ cultivar, except HrDEF-C3. The HrDEF-C3 gene was expressed in petals and lip in the wild type but was ectopically expressed in sepal, petals, lip, leaf, root and bulb in ‘Hishou’. Sequence analysis of the HrDEF-C3 loci revealed that the ‘Hishou’ genome harbored two types of HrDEF-C3 genes: one identical to wild-type HrDEF-C3 and the other carrying a retrotransposon insertion in its promoter. Genetic linkage analysis of the progeny derived from an intraspecific cross between ‘Hishou’ and the wild type demonstrated that the mutant pseudopeloric trait was dominantly inherited and was linked to the HrDEF-C3 gene carrying the retrotransposon. These results indicate that the pseudopeloric phenotype is caused by retrotransposon insertion in the HrDEF-C3 promoter, resulting in the ectopic expression of HrDEF-C3. As the expression of HrAGL6-C2 was limited to lateral sepals and lip, the overlapping expression of HrDEF-C3 and HrAGL6-C2 is likely to be responsible for the sepal to lip-like identity in the lateral sepals of the ‘Hishou’ cultivar.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)439-451
Number of pages13
JournalPlant Journal
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Aug


  • DEFICIENS -like gene
  • floral homeotic mutant
  • Orchidaceae
  • pseudopeloric mutation
  • retrotransposon


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