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Epigenetic examination of heterosis in tomato

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Hybrid plants are used extensively in agriculture due to their superior productivity and biomass. The gains are assumed to be a consequence of changes to the transcriptome in the hybrid that alter the phenotype of the plant. It was proposed that heterosis had non-Mendelian features, that is, an epigenetic basis. Recent reports present a compelling argument that epigenetic features and mechanisms can be exploited to improve plant performance by finding, creating or manipulating the diversity underlying heterosis. Here, we are investigating two different tomato hybrid crosses and their respective parents to understand if transgressive epigenetic features contribute to heterosis in hybrid tomato and how they could be used to enhance Parental combinability or Progeny Selection for improving heterosis.

This talk is part of the Plant Sciences Departmental Seminars series.

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