Improved Heat FT Induction Leads to Earlier and More Prolific Flowering in Poplar

Abdul Azeez (Michigan Technological University, MI)
Victor B. Busov (Michigan Technological University, MI)


Trees have a long juvenile phase before reproductive onset. This makes their breeding and studying floral development difficult. Precocious flowering using FT technology has shown promise. However, transgenic FT overexpression has significant negative pleiotropic effects. Hence, there has been interest in inducible FT expression for flower induction. Previously reported heat inducible expression of FT in poplar successfully induced flowering. However, flowering was sporadic and took up to 6 weeks. Here we report improvements in the protocol, which led to faster and more prolific flowering. Specifically, we increased the once to three times daily heat treatment. The repeated heat inductive treatments led to nearly five times higher FT expression, compared to the single daily treatment. The highly increased FT expression led to significant acceleration and abundance of flowering.


Poplar; Heat shock promoter; Flowering Locus T; Flowering; Heat induction

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