Genome-wide non-mendelian inheritance of extra-genomic information in Arabidopsis
Here we show that Arabidopsis plants homozygous for recessive mutant alleles of the organ fusion gene HOTHEAD (HTH) can inherit allele-specific DNA sequence information that was not present in the chromosomal genome of their parents but was present in previous generations. This previously undescribed process is shown to occur at all DNA sequence polymorphisms examined and therefore seems to be a general mechanism for extra-genomic inheritance of DNA sequence information. We postulate that these genetic restoration events are the result of a template-directed process that makes use of an ancestral RNA-sequence cache.
This conclusion is not uniform, De Rerum Natura
thinks there may be other, natural selection based, explanations. If the authors are right, it's a complex, extra-genetic inheritance mechanism, if DRN is right, it clarifies the power of selection. In either event, evolutionary theory advances.