The first and second backcross progeny of the intergeneric fusion hybrids of potato and tomato after crossing with potato
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Somatic fusion hybrids between the diploid potato and tomato were backcrossed to several genotypes of potato. Two ploidy levels of fusion hybrids, 4x and 6x, were used as female parents in backcrosses with five clones of 4x-potato. An estimate of the berry set and “seed set” in immature berries harvested 14–21 days after pollination indicated that crosses between certain combinations of 6x-fusion hybrids and male parents were more successful than others. The culture of over 4000 young seeds from berries harvested 2–2.5 weeks after pollination gave rise to a single seedling, 93.6701, from the cross between the 6x-fusion hybrid C 31-17-1 and the 4x-potato AM 66.42. This seedling was found to possess a pentaploid chromosome number, which was expected of a 6x × 4x cross. Isozyme analysis and DNA hybridisation studies confirmed that the seedling 93.6701 was indeed a backcross (BC1) progeny. Morphologically, this BC1 plant resembled potato with respect to plant habit, leaf shape, stolons and tuber characteristics, while some of the characters, such as floral morphology and the fragrance of the crushed leaves (typical of tomato), were intermediate. It was male sterile but could be successfully hybridized with 4x-potato through in vitro culture of yound seeds; thus, BC2 plants were obtained. The possibilities of backcrossing and the potential use of BC1 and BC2 plants in genetics and breeding are discussed.
Key wordsProtoplast fusion Potato Tomato Post-fertilisation barriers Introgression
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