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  1. Abstract

    The strawberry is one of the world's most popular fruits, providing humans with vitamins, fibers, and antioxidants. Cultivated strawberry (Fragaria × ananassa) is an allo-octoploid and highly heterozygous, making it a challenge for breeding, quantitative trait locus (QTL) mapping, and gene discovery. Some wild strawberry relatives, such as Fragaria vesca, have diploid genomes and are becoming laboratory models for the cultivated strawberry. Recent advances in genome sequencing and CRISPR-mediated genome editing have greatly improved the understanding of various aspects of strawberry growth and development in both cultivated and wild strawberries. This review focuses on fruit quality traits that are most relevant to the consumers, including fruit aroma, sweetness, color, firmness, and shape. Recently available phased-haplotype genomes, single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) arrays, extensive fruit transcriptomes, and other big data have made it possible to locate key genomic regions or pinpoint specific genes that underlie volatile synthesis, anthocyanin accumulation for fruit color, and sweetness intensity or perception. These new advances will greatly facilitate marker-assisted breeding, the introgression of missing genes into modern varieties, and precise genome editing of selected genes and pathways. Strawberries are poised to benefit from these recent advances, providing consumers with fruit that is tastier, longer-lasting, healthier, and more beautiful.

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  2. The stem cell pools at the shoot apex and root tip give rise to all the above and below ground tissues of a plant. Prior studies in Arabidopsis identified a TSO1-MYB3R1 transcriptional module that controls the number and size of the stem cell pools at the shoot apex and root tip. Since TSO1 and MYB3R1 are homologous to components of an animal cell cycle regulatory complex DREAM, Arabidopsis mutants of TSO1 and MYB3R1 provide valuable tools for investigations into the link between cell cycle regulation and stem cell maintenance in plants. In this study, an Arabidopsis cyclin A gene, CYCA3;4, was identified as a member of the TSO1-MYB3R1 regulatory module and cyca3;4 mutations suppressed the tso1-1 mutant phenotype specifically in the shoot. The work reveals how the TSO1-MYB3R1 module is integrated with the cell cycle machinery to control cell division at the shoot meristem.

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  3. Abstract The R2R3-MYB transcription factor FveMYB10 is a major regulator of anthocyanin pigmentation in the red strawberry fruits. fvemyb10 loss-of-function mutants form yellow fruits but still accumulate purple-colored anthocyanins in the petioles, suggesting that anthocyanin biosynthesis is under distinct regulation in fruits and petioles. We identified a green petioles (gp)-1 mutant from chemical mutagenesis in the diploid wild strawberry Fragaria vesca that lacks anthocyanins in petioles. Using mapping-by-sequencing and transient functional assays, we confirmed that the causative mutation resides in a FveMYB10-Like (MYB10L) gene and that FveMYB10 and FveMYB10L function independently in the fruit and petiole respectively. In addition to their tissue-specific regulation, FveMYB10 and FveMYB10L respond differently to changes in light quality, produce distinct anthocyanin compositions, and preferentially activate different downstream anthocyanin biosynthesis genes in their respective tissues. This work identifies a new regulator of anthocyanin synthesis and demonstrates that two paralogous MYB genes with specialized functions enable tissue-specific regulation of anthocyanin biosynthesis in fruit and petiole tissues. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 21, 2023
  4. Abstract

    The dominance of flowering plants on earth is owed largely to the evolution of maternal tissues such as fruit and seedcoat that protect and disseminate the seeds. The mechanism of how fertilization triggers the development of these specialized maternal tissues is not well understood. A key event is the induction of auxin synthesis in the endosperm, and the mobile auxin subsequently stimulates seedcoat and fruit development. However, the regulatory mechanism of auxin synthesis in the endosperm remains unknown. Here, we show that a type I MADS box geneAGL62is required for the activation of auxin synthesis in the endosperm in bothFragaria vesca, a diploid strawberry, and in Arabidopsis. Several strawberryFveATHBgenes were identified as downstream targets ofFveAGL62and act to repress auxin biosynthesis. In this work, we identify a key mechanism for auxin induction to mediate fertilization success, a finding broadly relevant to flowering plants.

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  5. null (Ed.)
    Abstract Cultivated strawberry ( Fragaria × ananassa ) is an important fruit crop species whose fruits are enjoyed by many worldwide. An octoploid of hybrid origin, the complex genome of this species was recently sequenced, serving as a key reference genome for cultivated strawberry and related species of the Rosaceae family. The current annotation of the F. ananassa genome mainly relies on ab initio predictions and, to a lesser extent, transcriptome data. Here, we present the structure and functional reannotation of the F. ananassa genome based on one PacBio full-length RNA library and ninety-two Illumina RNA-Seq libraries. This improved annotation of the F. ananassa genome, v1.0.a2, comprises a total of 108,447 gene models, with 97.85% complete BUSCOs. The models of 19,174 genes were modified, 360 new genes were identified, and 11,044 genes were found to have alternatively spliced isoforms. Additionally, we constructed a strawberry genome database (SGD) for strawberry gene homolog searching and annotation downloading. Finally, the transcriptome of the receptacles and achenes of F. ananassa at four developmental stages were reanalyzed and qualified, and the expression profiles of all the genes in this annotation are also provided. Together, this study provides an updated annotation of the F. ananassa genome, which will facilitate genomic analyses across the Rosaceae family and gene functional studies in cultivated strawberry. 
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  6. null (Ed.)
    Rosaceae, a large plant family of more than 3,000 species, consists of many economically important fruit and ornamental crops, including peach, apple, strawberry, raspberry, cherry, and rose. These horticultural crops are not only important economic drivers in many regions of the world, but also major sources of human nutrition. Additionally, due to the diversity of fruit types in Rosaceae, this plant family offers excellent opportunities for investigations into fleshy fruit diversity, evolution, and development. With the development of high-throughput sequencing technologies and computational tools, an increasing number of high-quality genomes and transcriptomes of Rosaceae species have become available and will greatly facilitate Rosaceae research and breeding. This review summarizes major genomic resources and genome research progress in Rosaceae, highlights important databases, and suggests areas for further improvement. The availability of these big data resources will greatly accelerate research progress and enhance the agricultural productivity of Rosaceae. 
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  8. null (Ed.)
    Abstract Diatoms are photosynthetic microalgae that fix a significant fraction of the world’s carbon. Because of their photosynthetic efficiency and high-lipid content, diatoms are priority candidates for biofuel production. Here, we report that sporulating Bacillus thuringiensis and other members of the Bacillus cereus group, when in co-culture with the marine diatom Phaeodactylum tricornutum, significantly increase diatom cell count. Bioassay-guided purification of the mother cell lysate of B. thuringiensis led to the identification of two diketopiperazines (DKPs) that stimulate both P. tricornutum growth and increase its lipid content. These findings may be exploited to enhance P. tricornutum growth and microalgae-based biofuel production. As increasing numbers of DKPs are isolated from marine microbes, the work gives potential clues to bacterial-produced growth factors for marine microalgae. 
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