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Article|02 Jul 2022|OPEN
Apomixis: genetic basis and controlling genes
Yuantao Xu1 , Huihui Jia1 , Chunming Tan1 , Xiaomeng Wu1 , Xiuxin Deng1 and Qiang Xu,1 ,
1Key Laboratory of Horticultural Plant Biology (Ministry of Education), Huazhong Agricultural University, Wuhan, Hubei 430070, China
*Corresponding author. E-mail:

Horticulture Research 9,
Article number: uhac150 (2022)
Views: 153

Received: 25 Apr 2022
Accepted: 27 Jun 2022
Published online: 02 Jul 2022


Apomixis is the phenomenon of clonal reproduction by seed. As apomixis can produce clonal progeny with exactly the same genotype as the maternal plant, it has an important application in genotype fixation and accelerating agricultural breeding strategies. The introduction of apomixis to major crops would bring many benefits to agriculture, including permanent fixation of superior genotypes and simplifying the procedures of hybrid seed production, as well as purification and rejuvenation of crops propagated vegetatively. Although apomixis naturally occurs in more than 400 plant species, it is rare among the major crops. Currently, with better understanding of apomixis, some achievements have been made in synthetic apomixis. However, due to prevailing limitations, there is still a long way to go to achieve large-scale application of apomixis to crop breeding. Here, we compare the developmental features of apomixis and sexual plant reproduction and review the recent identification of apomixis genes, transposons, epigenetic regulation, and genetic events leading to apomixis. We also summarize the possible strategies and potential genes for engineering apomixis into crop plants.