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Transition from juvenile to reproductive phases in Passiflora organensis (Passifloraceae, Decaloba)

Grant number: 15/25633-1
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): April 01, 2016
Effective date (End): June 30, 2020
Field of knowledge:Agronomical Sciences - Agronomy - Crop Science
Principal Investigator:Adriana Pinheiro Martinelli
Grantee:Tatiana de Souza Moraes
Host Institution: Centro de Energia Nuclear na Agricultura (CENA). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Piracicaba , SP, Brazil
Associated scholarship(s):18/12853-1 - Transition from juvenile to reproductive phases in Passiflora organensis (Passifloraceae, Decaloba), BE.EP.DR


The Passiflora genus includes about 600 species of mostly tropical plants. This genus is an excellent model for stage-transition studies, since there are evident morphological differences among plants in the juvenile, mature vegetative and mature reproductive stages. In almost all Passiflora species, plants in the juvenile stage produce leaves morphologically different from the mature phase, and do not produce tendrils. Plants in the vegetative mature stage produce tendrils in the leaf axils, and in the reproductive mature stage they produce tendrils and flowers from the axillary meristems. The ontogenesis and the arrangement of these structures have led authors to consider the tendril in Passiflora as part of the axis of a reduced inflorescence. The molecular mechanisms that define these structures of common origin, but with entirely different identities, have not been defined yet. In the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana, the molecular mechanisms involved in the transition phase are controlled by a hierarchy of interactions involving the products of genes such as FLOWERING LOCUS T (FT), LEAFY (LFY), FRUITFULL (FUL), APETALA1 (AP1) its paralog CAULIFLOWER (CAL) and TERMINAL FLOWER 1 (TFL1). The product of FT gene is considered as the florigen, which activates the whole flowering route while LFY, AP1, CAL and FUL promote the identity of the floral meristem, and TFL1 is required to maintain the identity of the inflorescence meristem, regulating the expression pattern of LFY and AP1. All these genes (except FT) codify transcription factors. Using appropriate tools to study development, which include light and electron microscopy, combined with gene expression analysis techniques, this study aims to: a) characterize morpho-anatomically the transition of juvenile to reproductive phases in P. organensis; b) identify potential orthologs of FT, LFY, AP1, TFL1 of the genus Passiflora and study their genetic structure; c) characterize the expression pattern of these genes. Considering that P. organensis already have its genome sequenced, a better understanding of the transition from juvenile-reproductive phases in this species can bring valuable contributions to further studies on production increase in commercially important species of the Passiflora genus, such as the yellow passion fruit.

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Scientific publications
(References retrieved automatically from Web of Science and SciELO through information on FAPESP grants and their corresponding numbers as mentioned in the publications by the authors)
MORAES, TATIANA S.; ROSSI, MONICA LANZONI; MARTINELLI, ADRIANA P.; DORNELAS, MARCELO C.. Morphological and anatomical traits during development: Highlighting extrafloral nectaries in Passiflora organensis. MICROSCOPY RESEARCH AND TECHNIQUE, v. 85, n. 8, p. 11-pg., . (18/12853-1, 15/25633-1, 18/21469-0)
MORAES, TATIANA S.; IMMINK, RICHARD G. H.; MARTINELLI, ADRIANA P.; ANGENENT, GERCO C.; VAN ESSE, WILMA; DORNELAS, MARCELO C.. Passiflora organensis FT/TFL1 gene family and their putative roles in phase transition and floral initiation. PLANT REPRODUCTION, . (18/12853-1, 18/21469-0, 15/25633-1)
Academic Publications
(References retrieved automatically from State of São Paulo Research Institutions)
MORAES, Tatiana de Souza. Unravelling the transition from vegetative to reproductive stages using Passiflora organensis as a model plant. 2020. Doctoral Thesis - Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Centro de Energia Nuclear na Agricultura (CENA/STB) Piracicaba.

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