, Volume 143, Issue 1–2, pp 1–8 | Cite as

Pedigree selection for Gibberella ear rot resistance in maize

  • Daniel A. Presello
  • Lana M. Reid
  • Gail Butler
  • Diane E. Mather


The pedigree method is often used for developing inbred lines in maize (Zea mays L.). This study was conducted to assess the effectiveness of pedigree selection for improving resistance to Gibberella ear rot in four maize populations. Selection was based on the severity of ear rot symptoms after inoculation with macroconidial suspensions of Fusarium graminearum (Schwabe) into the silk channel (for two populations) and into the developing kernels (for two other populations). Samples of the selfed families (S1 to S5), recovered from remnant seed from the selection programs, were evaluated for disease resistance during three years, using inoculation and evaluation protocols similar to those used during selection. Among-family selection was effective in both of the populations selected after silk inoculation and in one of the populations selected after kernel inoculation. Responses to selection were more evident in later than in earlier generations for both types of inoculation. Changes in the estimated genetic gain over generations were consistent with changes in the variances among families, which tended to increase in early generations and to decrease in later generations. Selection after kernel inoculation seemed to have been more effective than selection after silk inoculation in developing families with more stable resistance. Based on the results obtained here, it seems that responses to family selection could be accelerated without increasing operational costs by increasing selection intensity in later generations and inoculating fewer plants per family.


Fusarium graminearum gibberella ear rot maize pedigree selection Zea mays 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business Media, Inc. 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Daniel A. Presello
    • 1
    • 2
  • Lana M. Reid
    • 3
  • Gail Butler
    • 3
  • Diane E. Mather
    • 2
    • 4
  1. 1.Instituto Nacional de Tecnología AgropecuariaPergaminoArgentina
  2. 2.McGill UniversityMontréalCanada
  3. 3.Agriculture and Agri-Food CanadaOttawaCanada
  4. 4.Molecular Plant Breeding Cooperative Research Centre and School of Agriculture and WineUniversity of Adelaide PMB 1Australia

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