, Volume 125, Issue 4, pp 671-683
Date: 06 Apr 2012

QTL analysis of soybean seed weight across multi-genetic backgrounds and environments

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Seed weight, measured as mass per seed, is an important yield component of soybean and is generally positively correlated with seed yield (Burton et al, Crop Sci 27:1093, 1987). In previous reports, quantitative trait loci (QTL) associated with seed weight, were identified in single genetic background. The objective of the present study was to identify QTL and epistatic QTL underlying soybean seed weight in three RIL populations (with one common male parent ‘Hefeng25’) and across three different environments. Overall, 18, 11, and 17 seed weight QTL were identified in HC (‘Hefeng25’ × ‘Conrad’), HM (‘Hefeng25’ × ‘Maple Arrow’), and HB (‘Hefeng25’ × ‘Bayfield’) populations, respectively. The amount of phenotypic variation explained by a single QTL underlying seed weight was usually less than 10 %. The environment and background-independent QTL often had higher additive (a) effects. In contrast, the environment or background-dependent QTL were probably due to weak expression of QTL. QTL by environment interaction effects were in the opposite direction of a effects and/or epistasis effects. Four QTL and one QTL could be identified (2.0 < LOD < 9.06) in the HC and HB populations, respectively, across three environments (swHCA2-1, swHCC2-1, swHCD1b-1, swHCA2-2 (linked to Satt233, Satt424, Satt460, Satt428, respectively) and swHBA1-1(Satt449). Seven QTL could be identified in all three RIL populations in at least one location. Two QTL could be identified in the three RIL populations across three environments. These two QTL may have greater potential for use in marker-assisted selection of seed weight in soybean.

Communicated by H. T. Nguyen.