Research Article

A genome-wide analysis of the ERF gene family in sorghum

Published: June 21, 2013
Genet. Mol. Res. 12 (2) : 2038-2055 DOI: https://doi.org/10.4238/2013.May.13.1
Cite this Article:
(2013). A genome-wide analysis of the ERF gene family in sorghum. Genet. Mol. Res. 12(2): gmr1822. https://doi.org/10.4238/2013.May.13.1
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Abstract

The ethylene response factor (ERF) family are members of the APETALA2 (AP2)/ERF transcription factor superfamily; they are known to play an important role in plant adaptation to biotic and abiotic stress. ERF genes have been studied in Arabidopsis, rice, grape, and maize; however, there are few reports of ERF genes in sorghum. We identified 105 sorghum ERF (SbERF) genes, which were categorized into 12 groups (A-1 to A-6 and B-1 to B-6) based on their sequence similarity, and this new method of classification for ERF genes was then further characterized. A comprehensive bioinformatic analysis of SbERF genes was performed using a sorghum genomic database, to analyze the phylogeny of SbERF genes, identify other conserved motifs apart from the AP2/ERF domain, map SbERF genes to the 10 sorghum chromosomes, and determine the tissue-specific expression patterns of SbERF genes. Gene clustering indicates that SbERF genes were generated by tandem duplications. Comparison of SbERF genes with maize ERF homologs suggests lateral gene transfer between monocot species. These results can contribute to our understanting of the evolution of the ERF gene family.

The ethylene response factor (ERF) family are members of the APETALA2 (AP2)/ERF transcription factor superfamily; they are known to play an important role in plant adaptation to biotic and abiotic stress. ERF genes have been studied in Arabidopsis, rice, grape, and maize; however, there are few reports of ERF genes in sorghum. We identified 105 sorghum ERF (SbERF) genes, which were categorized into 12 groups (A-1 to A-6 and B-1 to B-6) based on their sequence similarity, and this new method of classification for ERF genes was then further characterized. A comprehensive bioinformatic analysis of SbERF genes was performed using a sorghum genomic database, to analyze the phylogeny of SbERF genes, identify other conserved motifs apart from the AP2/ERF domain, map SbERF genes to the 10 sorghum chromosomes, and determine the tissue-specific expression patterns of SbERF genes. Gene clustering indicates that SbERF genes were generated by tandem duplications. Comparison of SbERF genes with maize ERF homologs suggests lateral gene transfer between monocot species. These results can contribute to our understanting of the evolution of the ERF gene family.