Toward a Molecular Cytogenetic Map for Cultivated Sunflower (Helianthus annuus L.) by Landed BAC/BIBAC Clones
Conventional karyotypes and various genetic linkage maps have been established in sunflower (Helianthus annuus L., 2n = 34). However, the relationship between linkage groups and individual chromosomes of sunflower remains unknown and has considerable relevance for the sunflower research community. Recently, a set of linkage group-specific bacterial /binary bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC/BIBAC) clones was identified from two complementary BAC and BIBAC libraries constructed for cultivated sunflower cv. HA89. In the present study, we used these linkage group-specific clones (∼100 kb in size) as probes to in situ hybridize to HA89 mitotic chromosomes at metaphase using the BAC- fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) technique. Because a characteristic of the sunflower genome is the abundance of repetitive DNA sequences, a high ratio of blocking DNA to probe DNA was applied to hybridization reactions to minimize the background noise. As a result, all sunflower chromosomes were anchored by one or two BAC/BIBAC clones with specific FISH signals. FISH analysis based on tandem repetitive sequences, such as rRNA genes, has been previously reported; however, the BAC-FISH technique developed here using restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP)−derived BAC/BIBAC clones as probes to apply genome-wide analysis is new for sunflower. As chromosome-specific cytogenetic markers, the selected BAC/BIBAC clones that encompass the 17 linkage groups provide a valuable tool for identifying sunflower cytogenetic stocks (such as trisomics) and tracking alien chromosomes in interspecific crosses. This work also demonstrates the potential of using a large-insert DNA library for the development of molecular cytogenetic resources.