Eleusine indica is one of the most common weed species found in agricultural land worldwide. Although herbicide-glyphosate provides good control of the weed, its frequent uses has led to abundant reported cases of resistance. Hence, the development of genetic markers for quick detection of glyphosate-resistance in E. indica population is imperative for the control and management of the weed. In this study, a total of 14 specific random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) markers were identified and two of the markers, namely S4R727 and S26R6976 were further sequence characterized. Sequence alignment revealed that marker S4R727 showing a 12-bp nucleotides deletion in resistant biotypes, while marker S26R6976 contained a 167-bp nucleotides insertion in the resistant biotypes. Based on these sequence differences, three pairs of new sequence characterized amplified region (SCAR) primers were developed. The specificity of these primer pairs were further validated with genomic DNA extracted from ten individual plants of one glyphosate-susceptible and five glyphosate-resistant (R2, R4, R6, R8 and R11) populations. The resulting RAPD-SCAR markers provided the basis for assessing genetic diversity between glyphosate-susceptible and -resistant E. indica biotypes, as well for the identification of genetic locus link to glyphosate-resistance event in the species.
In this study, the effects of limited and excess phosphate on biomass content, oil content, fatty acid profile and the expression of three fatty acid desaturases in Messastrum gracile SE-MC4 were determined. It was found that total biomass (0.67-0.83 g L-1), oil content (30.99-38.08%) and the duration for cells to reach stationary phase (25-27 days) were not considerably affected by phosphate limitation. However, excess phosphate slightly reduced total biomass and oil content to 0.50 g L-1 and 25.36% respectively. The dominant fatty acids in M. gracile, pamitic acid (C16:0) and oleic acid (C18:1) which constitute more than 81% of the total fatty acids remained relatively high and constant across all phosphate concentrations. Reduction of phosphate concentration to 25% and below significantly increased total MUFA, whereas increasing phosphate concentration to ≥ 50% and ≥ 100% significantly increased total SFA and PUFA content respectively. The expression of omega-3 fatty acid desaturase (ω-3 FADi1, ω-3 FADi2) and omega-6 fatty acid desaturase (ω-6 FAD) was increased under phosphate limitation, especially at ≤ 12.5% phosphate, whereas levels of streoyl-ACP desaturase (SAD) transcripts were relatively unchanged across all phosphate concentrations. The first isoform of ω-3 FAD (ω-3 FADi) displayed a binary upregulation under limited (≤ 12.5%) and excess (200%) phosphate. The expression of ω-6 FAD, ω-3 FAD and SAD were inconsistent with the accumulation of oleic acid (C18:1), linoleic acid (C18:2) and alpha-linolenic acid (C18:3), suggesting that these genes may be regulated indirectly by phosphate availability via post-transcriptional or post-translational mechanisms.
In this study, the effects of limited and excess nitrate on biomass, lipid production, and fatty acid profile in Messastrum gracile SE-MC4 were determined. The expression of fatty acid desaturase genes, namely stearoyl-ACP desaturase (SAD), omega-6 fatty acid desaturase (ω-6 FAD), omega-3 fatty acid desaturase isoform 1 (ω-3 FADi1), and omega-3 fatty acid desaturase isoform 2 (ω-3 FADi2) was also assessed. It was found that nitrate limitation generally increased the total oil, α-linolenic acid (C18:3n3) and total polyunsaturated fatty acid (PUFA) contents in M. gracile. The reduction of nitrate concentration from 1.76 to 0.11 mM increased the total oil content significantly from 32.5 to 41.85% (dry weight). Palmitic (C16:0) and oleic (C18:1) acids as the predominant fatty acids in this microalgae constituted between 82 and 87% of the total oil content and were relatively consistent throughout all nitrate concentrations tested. The expression of SAD, ω-6 FAD, and ω-3 FADi2 genes increased under nitrate limitation, especially at 0.11 mM nitrate. The ω-3 FADi1 demonstrated a binary up-regulation pattern of expression under both nitrate-deficient (0.11 mM) and -excess (3.55 mM) conditions. Thus, findings from this study suggested that limited or excess nitrate could be used as part of a cultivation strategy to increase oil and PUFA content following media optimisation and more efficient culture methodology. Data obtained from the expression of desaturase genes would provide valuable insights into their roles under excess and limited nitrate conditions in M. gracile, potentially paving the way for future genetic modifications.