Sequence-tagged high-density genetic maps of Zoysia japonica provide insights into genome evolution in Chloridoideae

Fangfang Wang, Ratnesh Singh, Anthony D. Genovesi, Ching Man Wai, Xiaoen Huang, Ambika Chandra, Qingyi Yu*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Summary Zoysiagrass (Zoysia spp.), belonging to the genus Zoysia in the subfamily Chloridoideae, is widely used in domestic lawns, sports fields and as forage. We constructed high-density genetic maps of Zoysia japonica using a restriction site-associated DNA sequencing (RAD-Seq) approach and an F1 mapping population derived from a cross between 'Carrizo' and 'El Toro'. Two linkage maps were constructed, one for each of the parents. A map consisting of 2408 RAD markers distributed on 21 linkage groups was constructed for 'Carrizo'. Another map with 1230 RAD markers mapped on 20 linkage groups was constructed for 'El Toro'. The average distance between adjacent markers of the two maps was at 0.56 and 1.4 cM, respectively. Comparative genomics analysis was carried out among zoysiagrass, rice and sorghum genomes and a highly conserved collinearity in the gene order was observed among the three genomes. Chromosome collinearity was disrupted at centromeric regions for each chromosome pair between zoysiagrass and sorghum genomes. However, no obvious synteny gaps were observed across the centromeric regions between zoysiagrass and rice genomes. Two homologous chromosomes for each of the 10 sorghum chromosomes were found in the zoysiagrass genome, indicating an allotetraploid origin for zoysiagrass. The reduction of the basic chromosome number from 12 to 10 in chloridoids and panicoids took place via independent single-step nested chromosome fusion events after the two subfamilies diverged from a common ancestor. The genetic maps will assist in genome sequence assembly, targeted gene isolation and comparative genomic analyses among grasses. Significance Statement The high-density genetic map provides an essential genomic resource for gene tagging and marker-assisted selection for zoysiagrass improvement, and also serves as foundation for sequencing zoysiagrass genome and conducting comparative genomics analysis among grasses. The manuscript provides comprehensive view of genome evolution of the subfamily Chloridoideae, a "missing link" in the evolutionary history of grasses, and essential information to improve our understanding of the mechanisms that have shaped grass genome evolution.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)744-757
Number of pages14
JournalPlant Journal
Issue number5
StatePublished - Jun 1 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Chloridoideae
  • Zoysia
  • chromosome number reduction
  • genetic map
  • nested chromosome fusion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • Plant Science
  • Cell Biology


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