What happens when the rain is back? A hypothetical model on how germination and post-germination occur in a species from transient seed banks

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2020-02-26

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Public Library Science

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We hypothesize that by simulating the natural priming in seeds of a species that forms transient seed banks it is possible to clarify molecular aspects of germination that lead to the recruitment of seedlings when the next rainy season begins. We used seeds of Solanum lycocarpum as a biological model. Our findings support the idea that the increment of seed germination kinetics when the rainy season returns is mainly based on the metabolism and embryonic growth, and that the hydropriming, at the end of seed dispersion, increases the germination window time of these seeds by mainly increasing the degradation of galactomannan of the cell wall. This can improve the energy supply (based on carbon metabolism) for seedling growth in post-germination, which improves the seedling's survival chances. From these findings, we promote a hypothetical model about how the priming at the end of the rainy season acts on mRNA synthesis in the germination of seeds from transient banks and the consequence of this priming at the beginning of the following rainy season. This model predicts that besides the Gibberellin and Abscisic Acid balance (content and sensitivity), Auxin would be a key component for the seed-seedling transition in Neotropical areas.

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Plos One. San Francisco: Public Library Science, v. 15, n. 2, 15 p., 2020.

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