, Volume 3, Issue 6, pp 481-493

Genetic dissection of herbicide tolerance in maize by molecular markers

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In order to detect the genetic architecture of maize tolerance to Alachlor, a widely used chloroacetanilide, linkage analysis between the expression of the trait and allelic composition of molecular markers was performed. The experiment was carried out on a population of 142 recombinant inbred lines, developed starting from the F1 between two lines with different reactivity to the herbicide, and self-fertilized for 10 generations; the lines were typed by 48 RFLP markers and 66 microsatellites (SSR). Besides seedling tolerance, evaluated as proportion of normal (non-injured) plants after herbicide treatment, other minor components of tolerance were studied: seed germination ability, pollen germination and tube growth in the presence of the herbicide. The analysis, performed by three statistical methods, revealed the presence of factors controlling seedling tolerance on seven chromosomal regions. Five QTLs appeared to be involved in seed germination ability in the presence of Alachlor, four QTLs in pollen tolerance in terms of germination and four in tube growth under stress were detected. Three loci, on chromosomes 1, 7 and 10, explained most of the variation of seedling tolerance, thus being interesting candidate for marker-assisted selection.