J Integr Plant Biol. ›› 2021, Vol. 63 ›› Issue (6): 1004-1020.DOI: 10.1111/jipb.13070

• Research Articles • Previous Articles     Next Articles

FT5a interferes with the Dt1-AP1 feedback loop to control flowering time and shoot determinacy in soybean

Lin Yue1†, Xiaoming Li2†, Chao Fang1†, Liyu Chen1†, Hui Yang1†, Jie Yang2, Zhonghui Chen2,3, Haiyang Nan1, Linnan Chen1, Yuhang Zhang1, Haiyang Li1,4, Xingliang Hou5, Zhicheng Dong1, James L. Weller5, Jun Abe6, Baohui Liu1,7 and Fanjiang Kong1,7*   

  1. 1School of Life Sciences, Innovative Center of Molecular Genetics and Evolution, Guangzhou University, Guangzhou 510006, China
    2Key Laboratory of South China Agricultural Plant Molecular Analysis and Genetic Improvement & Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Applied Botany, South China Botanical Garden, the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangzhou 510650, China
    3University of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
    4National Key Laboratory of Crop Genetics and Germplasm Enhancement, National Center for Soybean Improvement, Nanjing Agricultural University, Nanjing 210095, China
    5School of Natural Sciences, University of Tasmania, Hobart, Tasmania 7001, Australia
    6Research Faculty of Agriculture, Hokkaido University, Sapporo 060‐8589, Japan
    7The Innovative Academy of Seed Design, Key Laboratory of Soybean Molecular Design Breeding, Northeast Institute of Geography and Agroecology, the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Harbin 1500000, China

    These authors contributed equally to this work.
    *Correspondence: Fanjiang Kong: kongfj@gzhu.edu.cn
  • Received:2020-10-30 Accepted:2021-01-08 Online:2021-01-17 Published:2021-06-01

Abstract: Flowering time and stem growth habit determine inflorescence architecture in soybean, which in turn influences seed yield. Dt1, a homolog of Arabidopsis TERMINAL FLOWER 1 (TFL1), is a major controller of stem growth habit, but its underlying molecular mechanisms remain unclear. Here, we demonstrate that Dt1 affects node number and plant height, as well as flowering time, in soybean under long-day conditions. The bZIP transcription factor FDc1 physically interacts with Dt1, and the FDc1-Dt1 complex directly represses the expression of APETALA1 (AP1). We propose that FT5a inhibits Dt1 activity via a competitive interaction with FDc1 and directly upregulates AP1. Moreover, AP1 represses Dt1 expression by directly binding to the Dt1 promoter, suggesting that AP1 and Dt1 form a suppressive regulatory feedback loop to determine the fate of the shoot apical meristem. These findings provide novel insights into the roles of Dt1 and FT5a in controlling the stem growth habit and flowering time in soybean, which determine the adaptability and grain yield of this important crop.

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