Comparative analyses of the molecular footprint of domestication in three Solanaceae species : eggplant, pepper and tomato

Abstract : Domestication started thousand years ago when human shifted from hunter-gatherer to agrarian societies. They started selecting wild plants for phenotypes related to consumption andyield. This evolutionary process induced changes in the gene pool of domesticated plants. This thesis focuses on genetic footprints induced by domestication within a trio of Solanaceae species: the eggplant (Solanum melongena), the pepper (Capsicum annuum) and the tomato (S. lycopersicum).Crop plants have been selected for thousand years on phenotypic traits, but the molecularconsequences of such selection remain unknown at the genome-wide scale. The study was performed on a RNAseq data set; using comparative methods between crops and their wild relatives,I studied, at the intra-specific scale, the demographic history, and, both the nucleotide diversity and the gene expression changes due to domestication. Comparing these three independent events ofdomestication, is a great opportunity to decipher the interspecific genetic changes, converging for the three species, during the human selection process.The first chapter is a book chapter about population genomics in model species. It details thestate of art of hundred years of research on tomato as model species (S. lycopersicum). Tomato is amodel species in genetics, as well as in population genomics thanks to the important collection of genomic data that have been accumulating over years. Tomato has the strongest economic importance within the trio of studied species. By highlighting the importance of crop wild relative species for adaptability improvement of modern cultivars, this chapter describes the scientific context of this thesis work.The two next chapters are following these researches and show the importance to both conserve and study the crop wild relative species.In the second chapter, I hypothesize that demographic changes within the three species experience a convergence, despite their independent domestication events. The comparative studyof demographic inferences allows the reconstruction of each domesticated species demographichistory. Theses inferences facilitate the parameter estimations such as the migration rate between crop and wild, the bottleneck strength paired with the human selection and the duration of thedomestication events. This chapter reveals a common bottleneck phenomenon as well as migration rate dependent to the allopatric or sympatric state of the crops with their wild relatives. Knowledge concerning the domestication events dating, for each of the three species, remain poorly studied and this thesis work discloses relative domestication time durations.These new insights bring valuable knowledge to the three species and induce a questioning on thedifferent genome parts that are selected and modified through domestication.The third chapter, test the hypothesis of a convergent evolution of molecular changes,especially transcriptional, induced by domestication and modern breeding. The comparative analysis of crop plants and their wild relatives assesses the convergence of regulation and adaptation mechanisms due to domestication. By testing the correlation between the selection footprints on genes and the gene expression changes in crop compared to their wild relative species, the previous hypothesis was confirmed. This analysis implies that domestication modified gene expression in the three species beyond only nucleotide polymorphisms. The ortholog analysis of our species genes, confirmed that domestication facilitated the fruit development and plant growth but relaxed selective pressure on genes of plant defense and environmental stresses tolerance. Demonstrating demographic changes and molecular footprints of domestication, my PhD thesis highlights several proofs of convergence.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, July 17, 2019 - 12:15:09 PM
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Stéphanie Arnoux. Comparative analyses of the molecular footprint of domestication in three Solanaceae species : eggplant, pepper and tomato. Agricultural sciences. Université d'Avignon, 2019. English. ⟨NNT : 2019AVIG0351⟩. ⟨tel-02185095v2⟩



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