Evolutionary transcriptomics reveals the origins of olives and the genomic changes associated with their domestication

Abstract : The olive (Olea europaea L. subsp. europaea) is one of the oldest and most socio-economically important cultivated perennial crop in the Mediterranean region. Yet, its origins are still under debate and the genetic bases of the phenotypic changes associated with its domestication are unknown. We generated RNA-seq data for 68 wild and cultivated olive trees to study the genetic diversity and structure both at the transcription and sequence levels. To localize putative genes or expression pathways targeted by artificial selection during domestication, we employed a two-step approach where we identified differentially expressed genes and screened the transcriptome for signatures of selection. Our analyses support a major domestication event in the eastern part of the Mediterranean Basin followed by dispersion toward the West and subsequent admixture with western wild olives. While we found large changes in gene expression when comparing cultivated and wild olives, we found no major signature of selection on coding variants and weak signals primarily affected transcription factors. Our results indicate that the domestication of olives resulted in only moderate genomic consequences and that the domestication syndrome is mainly related to changes in gene expression, consistent with its evolutionary history and life history traits. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
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Contributor : Laurent Jonchère <>
Submitted on : Wednesday, September 4, 2019 - 2:38:38 PM
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M Gros-Balthazard, G Besnard, G Sarah, Y Holtz, J Leclercq, et al.. Evolutionary transcriptomics reveals the origins of olives and the genomic changes associated with their domestication. Plant Journal, Wiley, In press, ⟨10.1111/tpj.14435⟩. ⟨hal-02178869⟩



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