Theoretical and Applied Genetics

, Volume 128, Issue 7, pp 1431–1447 | Cite as

Genetic analysis of glucosinolate variability in broccoli florets using genome-anchored single nucleotide polymorphisms

  • Allan F. Brown
  • Gad G. Yousef
  • Robert W. Reid
  • Kranthi K. Chebrolu
  • Aswathy Thomas
  • Christopher Krueger
  • Elizabeth Jeffery
  • Eric Jackson
  • John A. Juvik
Original Paper


Key message

The identification of genetic factors influencing the accumulation of individual glucosinolates in broccoli florets provides novel insight into the regulation of glucosinolate levels in Brassica vegetables and will accelerate the development of vegetables with glucosinolate profiles tailored to promote human health.


Quantitative trait loci analysis of glucosinolate (GSL) variability was conducted with a B. oleracea (broccoli) mapping population, saturated with single nucleotide polymorphism markers from a high-density array designed for rapeseed (Brassica napus). In 4 years of analysis, 14 QTLs were associated with the accumulation of aliphatic, indolic, or aromatic GSLs in floret tissue. The accumulation of 3-carbon aliphatic GSLs (2-propenyl and 3-methylsulfinylpropyl) was primarily associated with a single QTL on C05, but common regulation of 4-carbon aliphatic GSLs was not observed. A single locus on C09, associated with up to 40 % of the phenotypic variability of 2-hydroxy-3-butenyl GSL over multiple years, was not associated with the variability of precursor compounds. Similarly, QTLs on C02, C04, and C09 were associated with 4-methylsulfinylbutyl GSL concentration over multiple years but were not significantly associated with downstream compounds. Genome-specific SNP markers were used to identify candidate genes that co-localized to marker intervals and previously sequenced Brassica oleracea BAC clones containing known GSL genes (GSL-ALK, GSL-PRO, and GSL-ELONG) were aligned to the genomic sequence, providing support that at least three of our 14 QTLs likely correspond to previously identified GSL loci. The results demonstrate that previously identified loci do not fully explain GSL variation in broccoli. The identification of additional genetic factors influencing the accumulation of GSL in broccoli florets provides novel insight into the regulation of GSL levels in Brassicaceae and will accelerate development of vegetables with modified or enhanced GSL profiles.


Single Nucleotide Polymorphism Marker Sinigrin Brassica Vegetable Broccoli Floret Glucoiberin 
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.


Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical Standards

The experiment conducted complies with the laws of the United States.

Supplementary material

122_2015_2517_MOESM1_ESM.docx (32 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 32 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Allan F. Brown
    • 1
  • Gad G. Yousef
    • 1
  • Robert W. Reid
    • 2
  • Kranthi K. Chebrolu
    • 1
  • Aswathy Thomas
    • 1
  • Christopher Krueger
    • 1
  • Elizabeth Jeffery
    • 3
  • Eric Jackson
    • 4
  • John A. Juvik
    • 5
  1. 1.Department of Horticultural Science, Plants for Human Health InstituteNorth Carolina State UniversityKannapolisUSA
  2. 2.Bioinformatics Services DivisionUniversity of North Carolina-CharlotteKannapolisUSA
  3. 3.Department of Food Science and Human NutritionUniversity of IllinoisUrbanaUSA
  4. 4.Wheat Innovation CenterGeneral Mills Crop BiosciencesManhattanUSA
  5. 5.Department of Crop ScienceUniversity of IllinoisUrbanaUSA

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