Project title: Uncovering the selection on non-homologous end joining and homologous recombination for genome downsizing in polyploid plants
Summary: Polyploidy has occurred iteratively with the divergence of most flowering plant lineages, and it is also one reason why genome size ranges an astonishing 2,400-fold across flowering plants. But what is a surprise, given the high incidence of polyploidy, is that most plant genomes are small. The general consensus is that after polyploidy, genome downsizing occurs, which over time renders the polyploid genome to a diploid-like form. Given that DNA losses per generation are likely to be very small, genome downsizing may be the result of NHEJ or HR, which causes the loss of DNA. Therefore, we will focus on revealing mechanistic process that leads to genome downsizing subsequent to polyploidy. The research will lead to new fundamental understanding of polyploid genome structure and to modes of genome evolution in plants.