Molecular and phenotypical characterization of genes that are involved in the control of seed dormancy and after-ripening

Natural variation for seed dormancy in Arabidopsis is mainly controlled by different additive genetic and molecular pathways, indicating the involvement of several independent pathways (Bentsink et al., 2010).The effect of the four main regulators of dormancy (DELAY OF GERMINATION (DOG) 1, 2, 3 and 6) has been confirmed by near isogenic lines (NILs). Dormant and non-dormant (after-ripened) seeds of these NILs have been submitted to transcriptome analyses in order to identify the downstream pathways by which these NILs control seed dormancy. These analyses revealed that although each NIL has a large set of specific up or down regulated genes, there is also a group of genes that are up regulated in all dormant or after-ripened seeds (Figure1). In this project these genes are being studied in more detail.