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Scientists Identify Maize QTLs for Simultaneous Root and Agronomic Trait Selection
Posted by: Prof. Dr. M. Raupp (IP Logged)
Date: August 30, 2018 09:25PM

Roots play an important role early in plant growth and development and are
involved in stress response and nutrient and water absorption. Researchers
have previously identified DNA sequences associated with root traits, but
these sequences have not been used in breeding programs.

Scientist Chuanli Ju from National Maize Improvement Center of china and
colleagues identified 36 putative quantitative trait loci (QTLs) associated
with maize root traits, including primary root length, total number of the
primary, seminal, and crown roots, lateral root number, total root tip
number, total root length, total root surface area, total root volume, and
average root diameter. They analyze these root traits at three time points
after germination using the recombinant inbred line population (RIL) Zong3 x

Notably, they found pleiotropic QTLs associated with more than one root
trait. Some of these QTLs are also associated with important agronomic
traits (grain yield, plant height, stress response) previously identified
using the same RILs. These traits have strong to moderate correlation with
the QTLs. These QTLs will be particularly useful in marker-assisted
selection of maize plants simultaneously containing useful root and
agronomic traits.


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