J Integr Plant Biol. ›› 2019, Vol. 61 ›› Issue (3): 278-295.DOI: 10.1111/jipb.12771

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Developmental pathways for shaping spike inflorescence architecture in barley and wheat

Ravi Koppolu1* and Thorsten Schnurbusch1,2*   

  1. 1Independant HEISENBERG-Research Group Plant Architecture, Leibniz Institute of Plant Genetics and Crop Plant Research (IPK), Corrensstr. 3, OT Gatersleben, 06466 Seeland, Germany
    2Faculty of Natural Sciences III, Institute of Agricultural and Nutritional Sciences, Martin-Luther-University, Halle-Wittenberg, 06120 Halle, Germany

    **Correspondences:
    Email: Ravi Koppolu (koppolu@ipk-gatersleben.de); Thorsten Schnurbusch (thor@ipk-gatersleben.de, Dr. Schnurbusch is fully responsible for the distributions of all materials associated with this article)
  • Received:2018-09-18 Accepted:2018-12-18 Online:2019-01-04 Published:2019-03-01

Abstract: Grass species display a wide array of inflorescences ranging from highly branched compound/panicle inflorescences to unbranched spike inflorescences. The unbranched spike is a characteristic feature of the species of tribe Triticeae, including economically important crops, such as wheat and barley. In this review, we describe two important developmental genetic mechanisms regulating spike inflorescence architecture in barley and wheat. These include genetic regulation of (i) row-type pathway specific to Hordeum species and (ii) unbranched spike development in barley and wheat. For a comparative understanding, we describe the branched inflorescence phenotypes of rice and maize along with unbranched Triticeae inflorescences. In the end, we propose a simplified model describing a probable mechanism leading to unbranched spike formation in Triticeae species.

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