2020 Volume 70 Issue 4 Pages 438-448
As prickles cause labour inefficiency during cultivation and scratches on the skin of fruits during transportation, they are considered undesirable traits of eggplant (Solanum melongena L.). Because the molecular basis of prickle emergence has not been entirely revealed in plants, we mapped an eggplant semi-dominant Prickle (Pl) gene locus, which causes the absence of prickles, on chromosome 6 of a linkage map of the F2 population derived from crossing the no-prickly cultivar ‘Togenashi-senryo-nigo’ and the prickly line LS1934. By performing synteny mapping with tomato, the genomic region corresponding to the eggplant Pl locus was identified. Through bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) screening, positive BAC clones and the contig sequence that harbour the Pl locus in the prickly eggplant genome were revealed. The BAC contig length was 133 kb, and it contained 16 predicted genes. Among them, a characteristic 0.5-kb insertion/deletion was detected. As the 0.5-kb insertion was commonly identified with the prickly phenotype worldwide, a primer pair that amplifies the insertion/deletion could be used for marker-assisted selection of the no-prickly phenotype. Such findings contribute to map-based-cloning of the Pl gene and the understanding of gene function, ultimately providing new insights into the regulatory molecular mechanisms underlying prickle emergence in plants.