Genetic analysis of drought response of wheat following either chemical desiccation or the use of a rain-out shelter
Simulating drought stress during the breeding process has been proposed as a way to select varieties under naturally non-stressful conditions. The aim of the study was to characterise the genetic basis of the response of 111 spring wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) varieties and landraces to chemical desiccation and to rain-out shelter drought. The effect of the rain-out shelter was a 15% reduction in plant height, spike length and thousand seed weight (TSW); in contrast, the desiccant treatment induced a 15% reduction in seed number, a 35–72% loss in TSW and a reduction in subsequent germination of 12%. A genome-wide association analysis revealed 263 significant marker-trait associations (MTAs), of which 246 involved days to anthesis, plant height, spike length, number of spikelets, seed number, TSW and germination from the non-treated plants. Only four and five MTAs involved TSW from plants grown under the rain-out shelter and the chemical desiccation, respectively, and harboured the Sugar-Dependent6 gene. Seven MTAs involved seed number for chemical desiccated plants. Both, chemical desiccation and rain-out shelter drought identified same tolerant genotypes. Concluding, both approaches are suitable to simulate different drought scenarios. However, there was a strong environmental impact for chemical desiccation which may increase the complexity of this tolerance mechanism.
KeywordsAbiotic stress Drought simulation Genetic mapping GWAS Phenotyping
Anna Marthe, Allah Bakhsh, Sibylle Pistrick, Annett Marlow, Peter Schreiber, Philip Kouria and the past and current staff of the IPK gene bank as well as Freta K. Balladona and Farhadz Fadhillah Sandi are gratefully acknowledged for their technical support and Wolfgang Link for statistical advice.
Author contributions statement
MN, AB and UL designed the work; RT, MN, FS, IM, AMA, ST and MR acquired and analysed the data; RT and MN wrote the original draft of the manuscript and AMA, AB, RT and MN critically revised the content. All authors read and approved the manuscript.
This study was funded by the DAAD (Rasha Tarawneh).
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.
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