New insights into the evolution of wheat avenin-like proteins in wild emmer wheat (Triticum dicoccoides)

Yujuan Zhang, Xin Hu, Shahidul Islam, Maoyun She, Yanchun Peng, Zitong Yu, Steve Wylie, Angela Juhasz, Mirza Dowla, Rongchang Yang, Jingjuan Zhang, Xiaolong Wang, Bernard Dell, Xueyan Chen, Eviatar Nevo, Dongfa Sun, Wujun Ma

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Fifteen full-length wheat grain avenin-like protein coding genes (TaALP) were identified on chromosome arms 7AS, 4AL, and 7DS of bread wheat with each containing five genes. Besides the a- and b-type ALPs, a c type was identified in the current paper. Both a and b types have two subunits, named x and y types. The five genes on each of the three chromosome arms consisted of two x-type genes, two y-type genes, and one c-type gene. The a-type genes were typically of 520 bp in length, whereas the b types were of 850 bp in length, and the c type was of 470 bp in length. The ALP gene transcript levels were significantly up-regulated in Blume-ria graminis f. sp. tritici (Bgt)-infected wheat grain caryopsis at early grain filling. Wild emmer wheat [(WEW), Triticum dicoccoides] populations were focused on in our paper to identify allelic variations of ALP genes and to study the influence of natural selection on certain alleles. Consequently, 25 alleles were identified for TdALP-bx-7AS, 13 alleles were identified for TdALP-ax-7AS, 7 alleles were identified for TdALP-ay-7AS, and 4 alleles were identified for TdALP-ax-4AL. Correlation studies on TdALP gene diversity and ecological stresses suggested that environmental factors contribute to the ALP polymorphism formation in WEW. Many allelic variants of ALPs in the endosperm of WEW are not present in bread wheat and therefore could be utilized in breeding bread wheat varieties for better quality and elite plant defense characteristics.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13312-13317
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number52
StatePublished - 26 Dec 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 National Academy of Sciences. All Rights Reserved.


  • ALP gene evolution
  • Avenin-like proteins
  • Natural selection
  • TdALP gene alleles
  • Wild emmer wheat

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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