Molecular Breeding

, 39:169 | Cite as

QTL mapping of root and aboveground biomass in the Brassica C genome using a B. napus population carrying genome content introgressed from B. oleracea

  • Berisso Kebede
  • Habibur RahmanEmail author


Root and aboveground biomass are important traits for resource acquisition and play an important role in the plant’s competitive ability and contribute to seed yield. A linkage map of the C genome of Brassica napus was constructed using a doubled haploid population, derived from cross between a B. napus line RIL144 carrying genome content introgressed from B. oleracea and a B. napus cultivar Hi-Q, and using SNP and SSR markers. The mapping population was evaluated for these two traits in a growth chamber set at 18/8 °C and 16 h photoperiod. Variation for both traits including transgressive segregation for root biomass was found. Ten QTL on chromosomes C1, C2, C6, C7 and C9 affecting root biomass and seven QTL on C1, C2, C4 and C8 affecting aboveground biomass were detected; among these, QTL allele of C2 and C6 of RIL-144 increased root biomass. Two additive × additive epistatic interactions were detected for aboveground biomass; the epistatic effects were 2–3 folds greater than the main effect of the QTL implying that gene interaction plays as an important role for this trait. BLASTn search of the C1, C2, C6 and C9 QTL regions showed homoeology with Arabidopsis thaliana chromosome At1, C9 QTL showed homoeology with At4 and At5, and C7 QTL showed homoeology with At2; these A. thaliana chromosome regions found to carry genes regulating root characteristics. Thus, the molecular markers identified and the knowledge of the genomic regions gained from this research can be used to improve the root and aboveground biomass traits of B. napus.


Brassica C genome QTL Root biomass Aboveground biomass Composite interval mapping Association mapping 



We thanks the personnel’s from the Canola Program of the University of Alberta including summer students for assistance in different routine operations.

Authors’ contribution

B.K. carried out the research, analyzed data and prepared the first draft. H.R. designed the project, supervised B.K., secured funding, and finalized the paper. Both authors read and approved the final manuscript.

Funding information

H.R. thanks the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC), Alberta Innovates Bio Solutions (AI Bio), Alberta Crop Industry Development Fund (ACIDF), Alberta Canola Producers Commission (ACPC), and the industry partner Crop Production Services (CPS) for providing financial support to this project. Financial support from the Canada Foundation of Innovation (CFI) for infrastructure development in the Canola Program, and infrastructure provided by University of Alberta is also gratefully acknowledged.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interests

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.

Supplementary material

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© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Agricultural, Food and Nutritional ScienceUniversity of AlbertaEdmontonCanada

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