The Genetic Basis of Trichomes in Yellow Monkeyflowers

Kalob Baesen, Lila Fishman, Division of Biological Sciences, University of Montana, 32 Campus Dr, Missoula, MT 59812

Genotype, phenotype, and fitness are key aspects of organismal diversity and are highly interconnected. Uncovering the basis of genotype-phenotype expression is a major component of understandingindividualfitness and evolution of populations. Plants, being sessile organisms, are highly susceptible to herbivory and fluctuating environments. They must produce anti-herbivory compounds and structures to deter predators and ensure survival and reproduction.One such structure aretrichomes (short hairs that grow on many parts of plants). The genetic basis behind trichomes is largelyunknown, so here, we aim to determine the basis of trichome production in an annual population of yellow monkey flowers (Mimulus guttatus). These plants are genetically and phenotypically diverse which makes for an ideal system to study adaptive traits. Here we look at variation with apopulation from the Cascade Mountains in Oregon; individualsin this populationhave differing amounts of trichomes. Previous work on this population has determined 3 genes within one locus that may be associated with trichome presence/absence. I scored trichome presence/absenceby growing individuals in growth chamber experiments.Individuals werethengenotyped using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) at the previously determined 3-gene region. By correlating trichome phenotype with genotypic variation of the 3-gene region, a causal relationship may be determined from one of the genes. Once this causal relationship is determined, we can look at history of the polymorphism, how it affects herbivory, and fitness of individuals in the field.

Additional Abstract Information

Presenter: Kalob Baesen

Institution: University of Montana

Type: Poster

Subject: Plant Sciences

Status: Approved

Time and Location

Session: Poster 9
Date/Time: Wed 12:00pm-1:00pm
Session Number: 6174