ANDREW LLOYD RESEARCH
I am a Sêr Cymru II Research Fellow, based at Aberystwyth University in Wales. I study whole genome duplication (polyploidy), meiosis, DNA repair and gene editing, all processes which generate new DNA sequences or sequence arrangements, providing the raw material for natural and assisted selection. My current research focuses on developing technologies to help increase the pace of plant breeding.
An Arabidopsis suecica meiotic cell, imaged using Structured Illumination Microscopy (SIM). Chromosome pairs align with the help of meiotic proteins ASY1 (green) and ZIP1 (magenta). DNA shown in blue.
Crossover Regulation in Allopolyploids
We have a new paper out today in Nature Communications with colleagues from INRA Versailles and the John Innes Centre. This study looks at the control of crossover formation between non-homologous chromosomes in Brassica. We have shown that non-homologous crossovers form almost exclusively via the MSH4 dependent pathway and that reducing MSH4 copy number limits non-homologous crossovers but does not reduce the number of homologous crossovers. This may explain why MSH4 has rapidly returned to a single copy following many independent polyploidy events as the establishment of genome stability in new allopolyploids requires limiting non-homologous crossovers while maintaining homologous crossovers.