, Volume 203, Issue 1, pp 177–184 | Cite as

Soybean cadmium concentration: validation of a QTL affecting seed cadmium accumulation for improved food safety

  • Johann VollmannEmail author
  • Tomáš Lošák
  • Martin Pachner
  • Daisuke Watanabe
  • Ludmila Musilová
  • Jaroslav Hlušek


Soybean can accumulate considerable amounts of cadmium depending on soil conditions. As low cadmium concentration of soybean is of great interest in soy food production, a major quantitative trait locus described earlier for controlling cadmium accumulation in the seed was utilized to classify early maturity genotypes with respect to cadmium uptake and to verify their cadmium accumulation level. Marker-selected soybean genotypes were then tested for cadmium accumulation in a pot experiment with three cadmium levels and at three field locations in Austria. Out of 48 soybean genotypes, 19 exhibited the microsatellite marker allele associated with low cadmium accumulation. In the pot experiment, seed cadmium concentration was below 0.15 mg kg−1 in low cadmium accumulating genotypes while it reached over 0.30 mg kg−1 in genotypes carrying the high cadmium allele. In field experiments, cadmium concentration was in the range between 0.03 and 0.16 mg kg−1, and both the cadmium accumulation locus as well as the experimental locations had a significant influence on seed cadmium. Marker-assisted selection of soybean genotypes for low cadmium accumulation could thus contribute to improved food safety which is particularly important for environments with unknown cadmium status of soil.


Soybean Seed cadmium concentration Quantitative trait locus Heavy metal accumulation Marker assisted selection 



This research was partly supported by project no. 63p4 of the joint AKTION Austria—Czech Republic programme.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Johann Vollmann
    • 1
    Email author
  • Tomáš Lošák
    • 2
  • Martin Pachner
    • 1
  • Daisuke Watanabe
    • 1
  • Ludmila Musilová
    • 2
  • Jaroslav Hlušek
    • 2
  1. 1.Division of Plant Breeding, Department of Crop SciencesUniversity of Natural Resources and Life Sciences Vienna (BOKU)Tulln an der DonauAustria
  2. 2.Department of Environmentalistics and Natural Resources, Faculty of Regional Development and International StudiesMendel University in BrnoBrnoCzech Republic

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