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Yael Danin-Poleg, Omer Barad, Doron Shem-Tov, Zhangjun Fei, James J. Giovannoni

The major goal of our research over the past two decades has been to identify novel genes underlying traits of agronomic importance, mainly those that are involved in metabolic pathways determining fruit quality in melon (Cucumis melo). A systems biology research strategy was applied, combining phenotypic, transcriptomic and metabolomic analyses of a recombinant inbred population (414 X Dul) derived from phylogenetically diverse parents. High throughput sequencing of the transcriptome (RNA-seq) of 94 lines of the population and their parents enabled (1) Identification of ca. 60,000 informative SNP markers for quantitative trait loci (QTL) and (2) Mapping of expression QTL (eQTL). Metabolite profiles were collected using both targeted (sugars, organic acids, carotenoids) and non-targeted metabolomic analyses. QTL analysis resulted in highly accurate mapping that enabled the pinpointing of the causal genes underlying major traits of interest. The results demonstrate the rapid technological and resource developments over the research period.

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The underlying genetic components of melon fruit quality traits are revealed using genomic resources
2 (1)

Yael Danin-Poleg, Omer Barad, Doron Shem-Tov, Zhangjun Fei, James J. Giovannoni

The underlying genetic components of melon fruit quality traits are revealed using genomic resources

The major goal of our research over the past two decades has been to identify novel genes underlying traits of agronomic importance, mainly those that are involved in metabolic pathways determining fruit quality in melon (Cucumis melo). A systems biology research strategy was applied, combining phenotypic, transcriptomic and metabolomic analyses of a recombinant inbred population (414 X Dul) derived from phylogenetically diverse parents. High throughput sequencing of the transcriptome (RNA-seq) of 94 lines of the population and their parents enabled (1) Identification of ca. 60,000 informative SNP markers for quantitative trait loci (QTL) and (2) Mapping of expression QTL (eQTL). Metabolite profiles were collected using both targeted (sugars, organic acids, carotenoids) and non-targeted metabolomic analyses. QTL analysis resulted in highly accurate mapping that enabled the pinpointing of the causal genes underlying major traits of interest. The results demonstrate the rapid technological and resource developments over the research period.

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