ResearchPad - plant-breeding https://www.researchpad.co Default RSS Feed en-us © 2020 Newgen KnowledgeWorks <![CDATA[An improved 7K SNP array, the C7AIR, provides a wealth of validated SNP markers for rice breeding and genetics studies]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_14581 Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) are highly abundant, amendable to high-throughput genotyping, and useful for a number of breeding and genetics applications in crops. SNP frequencies vary depending on the species and populations under study, and therefore target SNPs need to be carefully selected to be informative for each application. While multiple SNP genotyping systems are available for rice (Oryza sativa L. and its relatives), they vary in their informativeness, cost, marker density, speed, flexibility, and data quality. In this study, we report the development and performance of the Cornell-IR LD Rice Array (C7AIR), a second-generation SNP array containing 7,098 markers that improves upon the previously released C6AIR. The C7AIR is designed to detect genome-wide polymorphisms within and between subpopulations of O. sativa, as well as O. glaberrima, O. rufipogon and O. nivara. The C7AIR combines top-performing SNPs from several previous rice arrays, including 4,007 SNPs from the C6AIR, 2,056 SNPs from the High Density Rice Array (HDRA), 910 SNPs from the 384-SNP GoldenGate sets, 189 SNPs from the 44K array selected to add information content for elite U.S. tropical japonica rice varieties, and 8 trait-specific SNPs. To demonstrate its utility, we carried out a genome-wide association analysis for plant height, employing the C7AIR across a diversity panel of 189 rice accessions and identified 20 QTLs contributing to plant height. The C7AIR SNP chip has so far been used for genotyping >10,000 rice samples. It successfully differentiates the five subpopulations of Oryza sativa, identifies introgressions from wild and exotic relatives, and is useful for quantitative trait loci (QTL) and association mapping in diverse materials. Moreover, data from the C7AIR provides valuable information that can be used to select informative and reliable SNP markers for conversion to lower-cost genotyping platforms for genomic selection and other downstream applications in breeding.

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<![CDATA[Use of multiple traits genomic prediction, genotype by environment interactions and spatial effect to improve prediction accuracy in yield data]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_14474 Genomic selection has been extensively implemented in plant breeding schemes. Genomic selection incorporates dense genome-wide markers to predict the breeding values for important traits based on information from genotype and phenotype records on traits of interest in a reference population. To date, most relevant investigations have been performed using single trait genomic prediction models (STGP). However, records for several traits at once are usually documented for breeding lines in commercial breeding programs. By incorporating benefits from genetic characterizations of correlated phenotypes, multiple trait genomic prediction (MTGP) may be a useful tool for improving prediction accuracy in genetic evaluations. The objective of this study was to test whether the use of MTGP and including proper modeling of spatial effects can improve the prediction accuracy of breeding values in commercial barley and wheat breeding lines. We genotyped 1,317 spring barley and 1,325 winter wheat lines from a commercial breeding program with the Illumina 9K barley and 15K wheat SNP-chip (respectively) and phenotyped them across multiple years and locations. Results showed that the MTGP approach increased correlations between future performance and estimated breeding value of yields by 7% in barley and by 57% in wheat relative to using the STGP approach for each trait individually. Analyses combining genomic data, pedigree information, and proper modeling of spatial effects further increased the prediction accuracy by 4% in barley and 3% in wheat relative to the model using genomic relationships only. The prediction accuracy for yield in wheat and barley yield trait breeding, were improved by combining MTGP and spatial effects in the model.

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<![CDATA[Options for calibrating CERES-maize genotype specific parameters under data-scarce environments]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c75ac02d5eed0c484d07ff4

Most crop simulation models require the use of Genotype Specific Parameters (GSPs) which provide the Genotype component of G×E×M interactions. Estimation of GSPs is the most difficult aspect of most modelling exercises because it requires expensive and time-consuming field experiments. GSPs could also be estimated using multi-year and multi locational data from breeder evaluation experiments. This research was set up with the following objectives: i) to determine GSPs of 10 newly released maize varieties for the Nigerian Savannas using data from both calibration experiments and by using existing data from breeder varietal evaluation trials; ii) to compare the accuracy of the GSPs generated using experimental and breeder data; and iii) to evaluate CERES-Maize model to simulate grain and tissue nitrogen contents. For experimental evaluation, 8 different experiments were conducted during the rainy and dry seasons of 2016 across the Nigerian Savanna. Breeder evaluation data were also collected for 2 years and 7 locations. The calibrated GSPs were evaluated using data from a 4-year experiment conducted under varying nitrogen rates (0, 60 and 120kg N ha-1). For the model calibration using experimental data, calculated model efficiency (EF) values ranged between 0.88–0.94 and coefficient of determination (d-index) between 0.93–0.98. Calibration of time-series data produced nRMSE below 7% while all prediction deviations were below 10% of the mean. For breeder experiments, EF (0.58–0.88) and d-index (0.56–0.86) ranges were lower. Prediction deviations were below 17% of the means for all measured variables. Model evaluation using both experimental and breeder trials resulted in good agreement (low RMSE, high EF and d-index values) between observed and simulated grain yields, and tissue and grain nitrogen contents. It is concluded that higher calibration accuracy of CERES-Maize model is achieved from detailed experiments. If unavailable, data from breeder experimental trials collected from many locations and planting dates can be used with lower but acceptable accuracy.

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<![CDATA[Introgression of peanut smut resistance from landraces to elite peanut cultivars (Arachis hypogaea L.)]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c67306ad5eed0c484f37ac6

Smut disease caused by the fungal pathogen Thecaphora frezii Carranza & Lindquist is threatening the peanut production in Argentina. Fungicides commonly used in the peanut crop have shown little or no effect controlling the disease, making it a priority to obtain peanut varieties resistant to smut. In this study, recombinant inbred lines (RILs) were developed from three crosses between three susceptible peanut elite cultivars (Arachis hypogaea L. subsp. hypogaea) and two resistant landraces (Arachis hypogaea L. subsp. fastigiata Waldron). Parents and RILs were evaluated under high inoculum pressure (12000 teliospores g-1 of soil) over three years. Disease resistance parameters showed a broad range of variation with incidence mean values ranging from 1.0 to 35.0% and disease severity index ranging from 0.01 to 0.30. Average heritability (h2) estimates of 0.61 to 0.73 indicated that resistance in the RILs was heritable, with several lines (4 to 7 from each cross) showing a high degree of resistance and stability over three years. Evidence of genetic transfer between genetically distinguishable germplasm (introgression in a broad sense) was further supported by simple-sequence repeats (SSRs) and Insertion/Deletion (InDel) marker genotyping. This is the first report of smut genetic resistance identified in peanut landraces and its introgression into elite peanut cultivars.

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<![CDATA[Genetic diversity and population structure of Miscanthus lutarioriparius, an endemic plant of China]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c5df329d5eed0c484580de8

Miscanthus lutarioriparius is a native perennial Miscanthus species of China, which is currently used as raw material of papermaking and bioenergy crop. It also has been considered as a promising eco-bioindustrial plant, which can offer raw material and gene for the biomass industry. However, lack of germplasm resources and genetic diversity information of M. lutarioriparius have become the bottleneck that prevents the stable and further development of the biomass industry. In the present study, genetic diversity of 153 M. lutarioriparius individuals nine populations was studied using 27 Start Codon Targeted (SCoT) markers. High polymorphic bands (97.67%), polymorphic information content (0.26) and allele number (1.88) showed SCoT as a reliable marker system for genetic analysis in M. lutarioriparius. At the species, the percentage of polymorphic loci [PPL] was 97.2%, Nei’s gene diversity [H] was 0.36, Shannon index [I] was 0.54 and Expected Heterozygosity [He] was 0.56. Genetic variation within populations (84.91%) was higher than among populations (15.09%) based on analysis of molecular variance (AMOVA). Moderate level of genetic differentiation was found in M. lutarioriparius populations (Fst = 0.15), which is further confirmed by STRUCTURE, principal coordinates analysis (PCoA) and an unweighted pair group method with arithmetic mean (UPGMA) analysis that could reveal a clear separation between groups of the north and south of Yangtze River. The gene flow of the populations within the respective south and north of Yangtze River area was higher, but lower between the areas. There was no obvious correlation between genetic distance and geographic distance. The breeding systems, geographical isolation and fragmented habitat of M. lutarioriparius may be due to the high level of genetic diversity, moderate genetic differentiation, and the population, structure. The study further suggests some measure for conservation of genetic resources and provides the genetic basis for improving the efficiency of breeding based on the results of diversity analysis.

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<![CDATA[Evolution of SSR diversity from wild types to U.S. advanced cultivars in the Andean and Mesoamerican domestications of common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris)]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c5ca2f4d5eed0c48441ee62

Progress in common bean breeding requires the exploitation of genetic variation among market classes, races and gene pools. The present study was conducted to determine the amount of genetic variation and the degree of relatedness among 192 selected common bean advanced cultivars using 58 simple-sequence-repeat markers (SSR) evenly distributed along the 11 linkage groups of the Phaseolus reference map. All the lines belonged to commercial seed type classes that are widely grown in the USA and include both dry bean and snap beans for the fresh and processing markets. Through population structure, principal components analyses, cluster analysis, and discriminant analysis of principal components (DAPC), Andean and Mesoamerican genotypes as well as most American commercial type classes could be distinguished. The genetic relationship among the commercial cultivars revealed by the SSR markers was generally in agreement with known pedigree data. The Mesoamerican cultivars were separated into three major groups—black, small white, and navy accessions clustered together in a distinct group, while great northern and pinto clustered in another group, showing mixed origin. The Andean cultivars were distributed in two different groups. The kidney market classes formed a single group, while the green bean accessions were distributed between the Andean and Mesoamerican groups, showing inter-gene pool genetic admixture. For a subset of 24 SSR markers, we compared and contrasted the genetic diversity of the commercial cultivars with those of wild and domesticated landrace accessions of common bean. An overall reduction in genetic diversity was observed in both gene pools, Andean and Mesoamerican, from wild to landraces to advanced cultivars. The limited diversity in the commercial cultivars suggests that an important goal of bean breeding programs should be to broaden the cultivated gene pool, particularly the genetic diversity of specific commercial classes, using the genetic variability present in common bean landraces.

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<![CDATA[Criteria for evaluating molecular markers: Comprehensive quality metrics to improve marker-assisted selection]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c478c38d5eed0c484bd0df6

Despite strong interest over many years, the usage of quantitative trait loci in plant breeding has often failed to live up to expectations. A key weak point in the utilisation of QTLs is the “quality” of markers used during marker-assisted selection (MAS): unreliable markers result in variable outcomes, leading to a perception that MAS products fail to achieve reliable improvement. Most reports of markers used for MAS focus on markers derived from the mapping population. There are very few studies that examine the reliability of these markers in other genetic backgrounds, and critically, no metrics exist to describe and quantify this reliability. To improve the MAS process, this work proposes five core metrics that fully describe the reliability of a marker. These metrics give a comprehensive and quantitative measure of the ability of a marker to correctly classify germplasm as QTL[+]/[–], particularly against a background of high allelic diversity. Markers that score well on these metrics will have far higher reliability in breeding, and deficiencies in specific metrics give information on circumstances under which a marker may not be reliable. The metrics are applicable across different marker types and platforms, allowing an objective comparison of the performance of different markers irrespective of the platform. Evaluating markers using these metrics demonstrates that trait-specific markers consistently out-perform markers designed for other purposes. These metrics also provide a superb set of criteria for designing superior marker systems for a target QTL, enabling the selection of an optimal marker set before committing to design.

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<![CDATA[Characterization and performance of castor bean lineages and parents at the UFRB germplasm bank]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c3d0120d5eed0c48403885a

The objective of this work was to characterize 203 lineages and five parents of Ricinus communis L. from the germplasm bank at the Federal University of Recôncavo da Bahia (UFRB), which was established by the Genetic Improvement and Biotechnology Program (NBIO) at the Center for Agrarian, Environmental and Biological Sciences. The study used 35 morpho-agronomic descriptors, proposed by the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Supply, and 12 quantitative descriptors suggested by NBIO. The experiment was conducted in a randomized block design, composed of four blocks, in the experimental field at UFRB in 2014. The frequency and entropy level of the qualitative descriptors were estimated with the Renyi procedure, and an analysis of variance was used for the quantitative descriptors. The analyses were made with the statistical program R. Of the qualitative morpho-agronomic descriptors evaluated, 22.86% had a high level of entropy (above 1.0), and all 12 quantitative descriptors showed significant differences. This indicates genetic variability in the germplasm bank and a satisfactory performance for most of the descriptors evaluated, as well as the possibility of direct and indirect use of the lineages and parents in genetic improvement programs of the species.

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<![CDATA[Analysis of genetic diversity and structure in a worldwide walnut (Juglans regia L.) germplasm using SSR markers]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c06f052d5eed0c484c6d6e5

Persian or English walnut (Juglans regia L.), the walnut species cultivated for nut production, is one of the oldest food sources known and is grown worldwide in temperate areas. France is the 7th leading producer as of 2016 with 39 kt. Deciphering walnut genetic diversity and structure is important for efficient management and use of genetic resources. In this work, 253 worldwide accessions from the INRA walnut germplasm collection, containing English walnut and several related species, were genotyped using 13 SSR (Single Sequence Repeat) markers selected from the literature to assess diversity and structure. Genetic diversity parameters showed a deficiency of heterozygotes and, for several SSRs, allele-specificities among the accessions tested. Principal Coordinate Analysis (PCoA) showed the 253 accessions clustered in largely in agreement with the existing botanical classification of the genus. Among the 217 J. regia accessions, two main clusters, accessions from Eastern Europe and Asia, and accessions from Western Europe and America, were identified using STRUCTURE software. This was confirmed by Principal Coordinate Analysis and supported by Neighbor-Joining tree construction using DARwin software. Moreover, a substructure was found within the two clusters, mainly according to geographical origin. A core collection containing 50 accessions was selected using the maximum length sub-tree method and prior knowledge about their phenotype. The present study constitutes a preliminary population genetics overview of INRA walnut genetic resources collection using SSR markers. The resulting estimations of genetic diversity and structure are useful for germplasm management and for future walnut breeding programs.

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<![CDATA[SNPSelect: A scalable and flexible targeted sequence-based genotyping solution]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5bca48fb40307c051665641c

In plant breeding the use of molecular markers has resulted in tremendous improvement of the speed with which new crop varieties are introduced into the market. Single Nucleotide Polymorphism (SNP) genotyping is routinely used for association studies, Linkage Disequilibrium (LD) and Quantitative Trait Locus (QTL) mapping studies, marker-assisted backcrosses and validation of large numbers of novel SNPs. Here we present the KeyGene SNPSelect technology, a scalable and flexible multiplexed, targeted sequence-based, genotyping solution. The multiplex composition of SNPSelect assays can be easily changed between experiments by adding or removing loci, demonstrating their content flexibility. To demonstrate this versatility, we first designed a 1,056-plex maize assay and genotyped a total of 374 samples originating from an F2 and a Recombinant Inbred Line (RIL) population and a maize germplasm collection. Next, subsets of the most informative SNP loci were assembled in 384-plex and 768-plex assays for further genotyping. Indeed, selection of the most informative SNPs allows cost-efficient yet highly informative genotyping in a custom-made fashion, with average call rates between 88.1% (1,056-plex assay) and 99.4% (384-plex assay), and average reproducibility rates between duplicate samples ranging from 98.2% (1056-plex assay) to 99.9% (384-plex assay). The SNPSelect workflow can be completed from a DNA sample to a genotype dataset in less than three days. We propose SNPSelect as an attractive and competitive genotyping solution to meet the targeted genotyping needs in fields such as plant breeding.

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<![CDATA[Evaluation of genetic diversity among Russet potato clones and varieties from breeding programs across the United States]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5b6d94b9463d7e2f79286cc0

DNA fingerprinting is a powerful tool for plant diversity studies, cultivar identification, and germplasm conservation and management. In breeding programs, fingerprinting and diversity analysis provide an insight into the extent of genetic variability available in the breeding material, which in turn helps breeders to maintain a pool of highly diverse genotypes by avoiding the selection of closely related parents. Oblong-long tubers with russeting skin characterize Russet potato, a primary potato market class in the United States, and especially in the western production regions. The aim of this study was to estimate the level of genetic diversity within this market class potato, utilizing clones and varieties from various breeding programs across the United States. A collection of 264 Russet and non-Russet breeding clones and varieties was fingerprinted using 23 highly polymorphic genome-wide simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers, resulting in 142 polymorphic alleles. The number of alleles produced per SSR varied from 2 to 10, with an average of 6.2 alleles per marker. The polymorphic information content and expected heterozygosity of SSRs ranged from 0.37 to 0.89 and 0.50 to 0.89 with an average of 0.77 and 0.81, respectively. Out of these 23 markers, we propose nine SSR markers best suited for fingerprinting Russet potatoes based on polymorphic information content, heterozygosity and ease of scoring. Diversity analysis of these clones suggest that there is significant diversity across the breeding material and the diversity has been evenly distributed among all the regional breeding programs.

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<![CDATA[Elucidating the contribution of wild related species on autochthonous pear germplasm: A case study from Mount Etna]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5b28b3e7463d7e1292999385

The pear (genus Pyrus) is one of the most ancient and widely cultivated tree fruit crops in temperate climates. The Mount Etna area claims a large number of pear varieties differentiated due to a long history of cultivation and environmental variability, making this area particularly suitable for genetic studies. Ninety-five pear individuals were genotyped using the simple sequence repeat (SSR) methodology interrogating both the nuclear (nDNA) and chloroplast DNA (cpDNA) to combine an investigation of maternal inheritance of chloroplast SSRs (cpSSRs) with the high informativity of nuclear SSRs (nSSRs). The germplasm was selected ad hoc to include wild genotypes, local varieties, and national and international cultivated varieties. The objectives of this study were as follows: (i) estimate the level of differentiation within local varieties; (ii) elucidate the phylogenetic relationships between the cultivated genotypes and wild accessions; and (iii) estimate the potential genetic flow and the relationship among the germplasms in our analysis. Eight nSSRs detected a total of 136 alleles with an average minor allelic frequency and observed heterozygosity of 0.29 and 0.65, respectively, whereas cpSSRs allowed identification of eight haplotypes (S4 Table). These results shed light on the genetic relatedness between Italian varieties and wild genotypes. Among the wild species, compared with P. amygdaliformis, few P. pyraster genotypes exhibited higher genetic similarity to local pear varieties. Our analysis revealed the presence of genetic stratification with a ‘wild’ subpopulation characterizing the genetic makeup of wild species and the international cultivated varieties exhibiting the predominance of the ‘cultivated’ subpopulation.

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<![CDATA[Chilling-Dependent Release of Seed and Bud Dormancy in Peach Associates to Common Changes in Gene Expression]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da98ab0ee8fa60ba28b3

Reproductive meristems and embryos display dormancy mechanisms in specialized structures named respectively buds and seeds that arrest the growth of perennial plants until environmental conditions are optimal for survival. Dormancy shows common physiological features in buds and seeds. A genotype-specific period of chilling is usually required to release dormancy by molecular mechanisms that are still poorly understood. In order to find common transcriptional pathways associated to dormancy release, we analyzed the chilling-dependent expression in embryos of certain genes that were previously found related to dormancy in flower buds of peach. We propose the presence of short and long-term dormancy events affecting respectively the germination rate and seedling development by independent mechanisms. Short periods of chilling seem to improve germination in an abscisic acid-dependent manner, whereas the positive effect of longer cold treatments on physiological dwarfing coincides with the accumulation of phenylpropanoids in the seed.

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<![CDATA[Construction of Chromosome Segment Substitution Lines in Peanut (Arachis hypogaea L.) Using a Wild Synthetic and QTL Mapping for Plant Morphology]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da8fab0ee8fa60b9f5f3

Chromosome segment substitution lines (CSSLs) are powerful QTL mapping populations that have been used to elucidate the molecular basis of interesting traits of wild species. Cultivated peanut is an allotetraploid with limited genetic diversity. Capturing the genetic diversity from peanut wild relatives is an important objective in many peanut breeding programs. In this study, we used a marker-assisted backcrossing strategy to produce a population of 122 CSSLs from the cross between the wild synthetic allotetraploid (A. ipaënsis×A. duranensis)4x and the cultivated Fleur11 variety. The 122 CSSLs offered a broad coverage of the peanut genome, with target wild chromosome segments averaging 39.2 cM in length. As a demonstration of the utility of these lines, four traits were evaluated in a subset of 80 CSSLs. A total of 28 lines showed significant differences from Fleur11. The line×trait significant associations were assigned to 42 QTLs: 14 for plant growth habit, 15 for height of the main stem, 12 for plant spread and one for flower color. Among the 42 QTLs, 37 were assigned to genomic regions and three QTL positions were considered putative. One important finding arising from this QTL analysis is that peanut growth habit is a complex trait that is governed by several QTLs with different effects. The CSSL population developed in this study has proved efficient for deciphering the molecular basis of trait variations and will be useful to the peanut scientific community for future QTL mapping studies.

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<![CDATA[Effects of Genotype and Growth Temperature on the Contents of Tannin, Phytate and In Vitro Iron Availability of Sorghum Grains]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989daa2ab0ee8fa60ba6227

Background

It has been predicted that the global temperature will rise in the future, which means crops including sorghum will likely be grown under higher temperatures, and consequently may affect the nutritional properties.

Methods

The effects of two growth temperatures (OT, day/night 32/21°C; HT 38/21°C) on tannin, phytate, mineral, and in vitro iron availability of raw and cooked grains (as porridge) of six sorghum genotypes were investigated.

Results

Tannin content significantly decreased across all sorghum genotypes under high growth temperature (P ≤0.05), while the phytate and mineral contents maintained the same level, increased or decreased significantly, depending on the genotype. The in vitro iron availability in most sorghum genotypes was also significantly reduced under high temperature, except for Ai4, which showed a pronounced increase (P ≤0.05). The cooking process significantly reduced tannin content in all sorghum genotypes (P ≤0.05), while the phytate content and in vitro iron availability were not significantly affected.

Conclusions

This research provides some new information on sorghum grain nutritional properties when grown under predicted future higher temperatures, which could be important for humans where sorghum grains are consumed as staple food.

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<![CDATA[Salt Stress Induced Variation in DNA Methylation Pattern and Its Influence on Gene Expression in Contrasting Rice Genotypes]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db10ab0ee8fa60bcbc9c

Background

Salinity is a major environmental factor limiting productivity of crop plants including rice in which wide range of natural variability exists. Although recent evidences implicate epigenetic mechanisms for modulating the gene expression in plants under environmental stresses, epigenetic changes and their functional consequences under salinity stress in rice are underexplored. DNA methylation is one of the epigenetic mechanisms regulating gene expression in plant’s responses to environmental stresses. Better understanding of epigenetic regulation of plant growth and response to environmental stresses may create novel heritable variation for crop improvement.

Methodology/Principal Findings

Methylation sensitive amplification polymorphism (MSAP) technique was used to assess the effect of salt stress on extent and patterns of DNA methylation in four genotypes of rice differing in the degree of salinity tolerance. Overall, the amount of DNA methylation was more in shoot compared to root and the contribution of fully methylated loci was always more than hemi-methylated loci. Sequencing of ten randomly selected MSAP fragments indicated gene-body specific DNA methylation of retrotransposons, stress responsive genes, and chromatin modification genes, distributed on different rice chromosomes. Bisulphite sequencing and quantitative RT-PCR analysis of selected MSAP loci showed that cytosine methylation changes under salinity as well as gene expression varied with genotypes and tissue types irrespective of the level of salinity tolerance of rice genotypes.

Conclusions/Significance

The gene body methylation may have an important role in regulating gene expression in organ and genotype specific manner under salinity stress. Association between salt tolerance and methylation changes observed in some cases suggested that many methylation changes are not “directed”. The natural genetic variation for salt tolerance observed in rice germplasm may be independent of the extent and pattern of DNA methylation which may have been induced by abiotic stress followed by accumulation through the natural selection process.

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<![CDATA[Evaluation and Exploration of Favorable QTL Alleles for Salt Stress Related Traits in Cotton Cultivars (G. hirsutum L.)]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989d9ddab0ee8fa60b684d7

Soil salinization is one of the major problems in global agricultural production. Cotton is a pioneer crop with regard to salt stress tolerance, and can be used for saline-alkali land improvement. The large-scale detection of salt tolerance traits in cotton accessions, and the identification of elite quantitative trait loci (QTLs)/genes for salt-tolerance have been very important in salt tolerance breeding. Here, 43 advanced salt-tolerant and 31 highly salt-sensitive cultivars were detected by analyzing ten salt tolerance related traits in 304 upland cotton cultivars. Among them, 11 advanced salt-tolerance and eight highly salt-sensitive cultivars were consistent with previously reported results. Association analysis of ten salt-tolerance related traits and 145 SSRs was performed, and a total of 95 significant associations were detected; 17, 41, and 37 of which were associated with germinative index, seedling stage physiological index, and four seedling stage biochemical indexes, respectively. Of these associations, 20 SSR loci were simultaneously associated with two or more traits. Furthermore, we detected 117 elite alleles associated with salt-tolerance traits, 4 of which were reported previously. Among these loci, 44 (37.60%) were rare alleles with a frequency of less than 5%, 6 only existed in advanced salt-tolerant cultivars, and 2 only in highly salt-sensitive cultivars. As a result, 13 advanced salt-tolerant cultivars were selected to assemble the optimal cross combinations by computer simulation for the development of salt-tolerant accessions. This study lays solid foundations for further improvements in cotton salt-tolerance by referencing elite germplasms, alleles associated with salt-tolerance traits, and optimal crosses.

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<![CDATA[Genomic Prediction of Seed Quality Traits Using Advanced Barley Breeding Lines]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989d9e0ab0ee8fa60b69733

Genomic selection was recently introduced in plant breeding. The objective of this study was to develop genomic prediction for important seed quality parameters in spring barley. The aim was to predict breeding values without expensive phenotyping of large sets of lines. A total number of 309 advanced spring barley lines tested at two locations each with three replicates were phenotyped and each line was genotyped by Illumina iSelect 9Kbarley chip. The population originated from two different breeding sets, which were phenotyped in two different years. Phenotypic measurements considered were: seed size, protein content, protein yield, test weight and ergosterol content. A leave-one-out cross-validation strategy revealed high prediction accuracies ranging between 0.40 and 0.83. Prediction across breeding sets resulted in reduced accuracies compared to the leave-one-out strategy. Furthermore, predicting across full and half-sib-families resulted in reduced prediction accuracies. Additionally, predictions were performed using reduced marker sets and reduced training population sets. In conclusion, using less than 200 lines in the training set can result in low prediction accuracy, and the accuracy will then be highly dependent on the family structure of the selected training set. However, the results also indicate that relatively small training sets (200 lines) are sufficient for genomic prediction in commercial barley breeding. In addition, our results indicate a minimum marker set of 1,000 to decrease the risk of low prediction accuracy for some traits or some families.

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<![CDATA[Development and Evaluation of a 9K SNP Array for Peach by Internationally Coordinated SNP Detection and Validation in Breeding Germplasm]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da31ab0ee8fa60b84acf

Although a large number of single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers covering the entire genome are needed to enable molecular breeding efforts such as genome wide association studies, fine mapping, genomic selection and marker-assisted selection in peach [Prunus persica (L.) Batsch] and related Prunus species, only a limited number of genetic markers, including simple sequence repeats (SSRs), have been available to date. To address this need, an international consortium (The International Peach SNP Consortium; IPSC) has pursued a coordinated effort to perform genome-scale SNP discovery in peach using next generation sequencing platforms to develop and characterize a high-throughput Illumina Infinium® SNP genotyping array platform. We performed whole genome re-sequencing of 56 peach breeding accessions using the Illumina and Roche/454 sequencing technologies. Polymorphism detection algorithms identified a total of 1,022,354 SNPs. Validation with the Illumina GoldenGate® assay was performed on a subset of the predicted SNPs, verifying ∼75% of genic (exonic and intronic) SNPs, whereas only about a third of intergenic SNPs were verified. Conservative filtering was applied to arrive at a set of 8,144 SNPs that were included on the IPSC peach SNP array v1, distributed over all eight peach chromosomes with an average spacing of 26.7 kb between SNPs. Use of this platform to screen a total of 709 accessions of peach in two separate evaluation panels identified a total of 6,869 (84.3%) polymorphic SNPs.

The almost 7,000 SNPs verified as polymorphic through extensive empirical evaluation represent an excellent source of markers for future studies in genetic relatedness, genetic mapping, and dissecting the genetic architecture of complex agricultural traits. The IPSC peach SNP array v1 is commercially available and we expect that it will be used worldwide for genetic studies in peach and related stone fruit and nut species.

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<![CDATA[A RAD Tag Derived Marker Based Eggplant Linkage Map and the Location of QTLs Determining Anthocyanin Pigmentation]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989d9faab0ee8fa60b71b24

Both inter- and intra-specific maps have been developed in eggplant (Solanum melongena L.). The former benefit from an enhanced frequency of marker polymorphism, but their relevance to marker-assisted crop breeding is limited. Combining the restriction-site associated DNA strategy with high throughput sequencing has facilitated the discovery of a large number of functional single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers discriminating between the two eggplant mapping population parental lines ‘305E40’ and ‘67/3’. A set of 347 de novo SNPs, together with 84 anchoring markers, were applied to the F2 mapping population bred from the cross ‘305E40’ x ‘67/3’ to construct a linkage map. In all, 415 of the 431 markers were assembled into twelve major and one minor linkage group, spanning 1,390 cM, and the inclusion of established markers allowed each linkage group to be assigned to one of the 12 eggplant chromosomes. The map was then used to discover the genetic basis of seven traits associated with anthocyanin content. Each of the traits proved to be controlled by between one and six quantitative trait loci (QTL), of which at least one was a major QTL. Exploitation of syntenic relationships between the eggplant and tomato genomes facilitated the identification of potential candidate genes for the eggplant QTLs related to anthocyanin accumulation. The intra-specific linkage map should have utility for elucidating the genetic basis of other phenotypic traits in eggplant.

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