Theoretical and Applied Genetics

, Volume 111, Issue 4, pp 619–629 | Cite as

The self-incompatibility locus (S) and quantitative trait loci for self-pollination and seed dormancy in sunflower

  • Sonali D. Gandhi
  • Adam F. Heesacker
  • Carrie A. Freeman
  • Jason Argyris
  • Kent Bradford
  • Steven J. KnappEmail author
Original Paper


Wild populations of common sunflower (Helianthus annuus L.) are self-incompatible and have deep seed dormancy, whereas modern cultivars, inbreds, and hybrids are self-compatible and partially-to-strongly self-pollinated, and have shallow seed dormancy. Self-pollination (SP) and seed dormancy are genetically complex traits, the number of self-compatibility (S) loci has been disputed, and none of the putative S loci have been genetically mapped in sunflower. We genetically mapped quantitative trait loci (QTL) for self-incompatibility (SI), SP, and seed dormancy in a backcross population produced from a cross between an elite, self-pollinated, nondormant inbred line (NMS373) and a wild, self-incompatible, dormant population (ANN1811). A population consisting of 212 BC1 progeny was subsequently produced by backcrossing a single hybrid individual to NMS373. BC1 progeny produced 0–838 seeds per primary capitula when naturally selfed and 0–518 seeds per secondary capitula when manually selfed and segregated for a single S locus. The S locus mapped to linkage group 17 and was tightly linked to a cluster of previously identified QTL for several domestication and postdomestication traits. Two synergistically interacting QTL were identified for SP among self-compatible (ss) BC1 progeny (R2=34.6%). NMS373 homozygotes produced 271.5 more seeds per secondary capitulum than heterozygotes. Germination percentages of seeds after-ripened for 4 weeks ranged from 0% to 100% among self-compatible BC1S1 families. Three QTL for seed dormancy were identified (R2=38.3%). QTL effects were in the predicted direction (wild alleles decreased self-pollination and seed germination). The present analysis differentiated between loci governing SI and SP and identified DNA markers for bypassing SI and seed dormancy in elite × wild crosses through marker-assisted selection.


Quantitative Trait Locus Linkage Group Seed Dormancy Composite Interval Mapping Quantitative Trait Locus Effect 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



This research was funded by grants to S.J. Knapp from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Research Initiative Competitive Grants Program Plant Genome Program (no. 98-35300-6166) and the USDA Cooperative State Research Education and Extension Service Initiative for Future Agricultural and Food Systems Plant Genome Program (no. 2000-04292).

Supplementary material

122_2005_1934_ESM_supp.pdf (155 kb)
(PDF 156 KB)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sonali D. Gandhi
    • 1
  • Adam F. Heesacker
    • 1
  • Carrie A. Freeman
    • 1
  • Jason Argyris
    • 2
  • Kent Bradford
    • 2
  • Steven J. Knapp
    • 3
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Crop and Soil ScienceOregon State UniversityCorvallisUSA
  2. 2.Department of Vegetable CropsUniversity of CaliforniaDavisUSA
  3. 3.Center for Applied Genetic TechnologiesThe University of GeorgiaAthensUSA

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