QTL mapping of root traits in a doubled haploid population from a cross between upland and lowland japonica rice in three environments

Zichao Li, Ping Mu, Chunping Li, Hongliang Zhang, Zhikang Li, Yongming Gao, Xiangkun Wang
TAG. Theoretical and Applied Genetics. Theoretische und Angewandte Genetik 2005, 110 (7): 1244-52
To genetically dissect drought resistance associated with japonica upland rice, we evaluated a doubled haploid (DH) population from a cross between two japonica cultivars for seven root traits under three different growing conditions (upland, lowland and upland in PVC pipe). The traits included basal root thickness (BRT), total root number (RN), maximum root length (MRL), root fresh weight (RFW), root dry weight (RDW), ratio of root fresh weight to shoot fresh weight (RFW/SFW) and ratio of root dry weight to shoot dry weight (RDW/SDW). The BRT was significantly correlated with the index of drought resistance, which was defined as the ratio of yield under the stress of the upland condition to that under the normal lowland condition. A complete genetic linkage map with 165 molecular markers covering 1,535 cM was constructed. Seven additive quantitative trait loci (QTLs) and 15 pairs of epistatic loci for BRT and RN were identified under upland and lowland conditions, and 12 additive QTLs and 17 pairs of epistatic QTLs for BRT, RN, MRL, RFW, RFW/SFW and RDW/SDW were identified under the PVC pipe condition. Four additive QTLs and one pair of epistatic QTLs controlling IDR were also found. These QTLs individually explained up to 25.6% of the phenotypic variance. QTL x environment (Q x E) interactions were detected for all root traits, and the contributions of these interactions ranged from 1.1% to 19.9%. Five co-localized QTLs controlling RFW and RDW, RFW/SFW, RDW/SDW and IDR, BRT and RN, RN, MRL and IDR were found. Four types of QTLs governing BRT and RN were classified by their detection in the upland and lowland conditions. Some common QTLs for root traits across different backgrounds were also revealed. These co-localized QTLs and common QTLs will facilitate marker-assisted selection for root traits in rice breeding programs.

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