BackgroundMeiosis of newly formed allopolyploids frequently encounter perturbations induced by the merging of divergent and hybridizable genomes. However, to date, the meiotic properties of allopolyploids with dysploid parental karyotypes have not been studied in detail. The allotetraploid Cucumis ×hytivus (HHCC, 2n = 38) was obtained from interspecific hybridization between C. sativus (CC, 2n = 14) and C. hystrix (HH, 2n = 24) followed by chromosome doubling. The results of this study thus offer an excellent opportunity to explore the meiotic properties of allopolyploids with dysploid parental karyotypes.ResultsIn this report, we describe the meiotic properties of five chromosomes (C5, C7, H1, H9 and H10) and two genomes in interspecific hybrids and C. ×hytivus (the 4th and 14th inbred family) through oligo-painting and genomic in situ hybridization (GISH). We show that 1) only two translocations carrying C5-oligo signals were detected on the chromosomes C2 and C4 of one 14th individual by the karyotyping of eight 4th and 36 14th plants based on C5- and C7-oligo painting, and possible cytological evidence was observed in meiosis of the 4th generation; 2) individual chromosome have biases for homoeologous pairing and univalent formation in F1 hybrids and allotetraploids; 3) extensive H-chromosome autosyndetic pairings (e.g., H-H, 25.5% PMCs) were observed in interspecific F1 hybrid, whereas no C-chromosome autosyndetic pairings were observed (e.g. C-C); 4) the meiotic properties of two subgenomes have significant biases in allotetraploids: H-subgenome exhibits higher univalent and chromosome lagging frequencies than C-subgenome; and 5) increased meiotic stability in the S14 generation compared with the S4 generation, including synchronous meiosis behavior, reduced incidents of univalent and chromosome lagging.ConclusionsThese results suggest that the meiotic behavior of two subgenomes has dramatic biases in response to interspecific hybridization and allopolyploidization, and the meiotic behavior harmony of subgenomes is a key subject of meiosis evolution in C. ×hytivus. This study helps to elucidate the meiotic properties and evolution of nascent allopolyploids with the dysploid parental karyotypes.