Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution

, Volume 53, Issue 4, pp 669–674

Advantages of Wild Diploid Solanum Species Over Cultivated Diploid Relatives in Potato Breeding Programs


DOI: 10.1007/s10722-004-2949-7

Cite this article as:
Jansky, S.H. & Peloquin, S.J. Genet Resour Crop Evol (2006) 53: 669. doi:10.1007/s10722-004-2949-7


For breeding programs of the tetraploid potato (Solanum tuberosum), both wild and cultivated diploid relatives are valuable sources of genetic diversity. While both types of germplasm are used in breeding programs, there are several advantages to using wild relatives. Diploid relatives are typically crossed with haploids (2n = 2x = 24) from tetraploid S. tuberosum to improve daylength adaptation. Most haploids are male sterile, so they are typically used as female parents. Cultivated diploids, such as members of the Phureja Group, produce male sterile hybrids when crossed as females to haploids; wild relatives, such as S. tarijense, often produce male fertile hybrids. Tuber yield following crosses of haploids to cultivated or wild relatives is often high. However, cultivated relatives generally produce hybrids with a high set of small tubers; hybrids from wild relatives are variable, but many are similar to cultivars in tuber size and set. While tubers of hybrids from cultivated relatives are typically rough, with deep eyes and raised internodes, those from wild relatives are often smooth. Tuber dormancy in hybrids with cultivated relatives is generally short, while that in hybrids with wild species is longer, allowing for storage over winter. Finally, resistance to several major diseases and stresses has been found in wild species and their hybrids with S. tuberosum haploids. The desirable traits in hybrids are transmitted to tetraploids via unilateral sexual polyploidization (4x × 2x or 2x × 4x crosses in which the diploid parent produces 2n gametes). Wild Solanum species are recommended for use in potato breeding programs as sources of genetic diversity that can be adapted easily following hybridization with S. tuberosum haploids.

Key words

Haploid Haploid × species hybrid Phureja Group Solanum tuberosum Unilateral sexual polyploidization Wild species 

Copyright information

© Springer 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of HorticultureUSDA/ARS,University of Wisconsin-MadisonUSA
  2. 2.Department of HorticultureUniversity of Wisconsin-MadisonMadisonUSA

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