PHYTOCHROME C Is an Essential Light Receptor for Photoperiodic Flowering in the Temperate Grass, Brachypodium distachyon
Daniel P. Woods, Thomas S. Ream, Gregory Minevich, Oliver Hobert, Richard M. Amasino


We show that in the temperate grass, Brachypodium distachyon, PHYTOCHROME C (PHYC), is necessary for photoperiodic flowering. In loss-of-function phyC mutants, flowering is extremely delayed in inductive photoperiods. PHYC was identified as the causative locus by utilizing a mapping by sequencing pipeline (Cloudmap) optimized for identification of induced mutations in Brachypodium. In phyC mutants the expression of Brachypodium homologs of key flowering time genes in the photoperiod pathway such as GIGANTEA (GI), PHOTOPERIOD 1 (PPD1/PRR37), CONSTANS (CO), and florigen/FT are greatly attenuated. PHYC also controls the day-length dependence of leaf size as the effect of day-length on leaf size is abolished in phyC mutants. The control of genes upstream of florigen production by PHYC was likely to have been a key feature of the evolution of a long-day flowering response in temperate pooid grasses.

  • Received June 2, 2014.
  • Accepted July 3, 2014.