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Analysis of genome-wide linkage disequilibrium in the highly polyploid sugarcane

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Abstract

Linkage disequilibrium (LD) in crops, established by domestication and early breeding, can be a valuable basis for mapping the genome. We undertook an assessment of LD in sugarcane (Saccharum spp), characterized by one of the most complex crop genomes, with its high ploidy level (≥8) and chromosome number (>100) as well as its interspecific origin. Using AFLP markers, we surveyed 1,537 polymorphisms among 72 modern sugarcane cultivars. We exploited information from available genetic maps to determine a relevant statistical threshold that discriminates marker associations due to linkage from other associations. LD is very common among closely linked markers and steadily decreases within a 0–30 cM window. Many instances of linked markers cannot be recognized due to the confounding effect of polyploidy. However, LD within a sample of cultivars appears as efficient as linkage analysis within a controlled progeny in terms of assigning markers to cosegregation groups. Saturating the genome coverage remains a challenge, but applying LD-based mapping within breeding programs will considerably speed up the localization of genes controlling important traits by making use of phenotypic information produced in the course of selection.

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Acknowledgments

We gratefully thank J.Y. Hoarau for his helpful revision of the manuscript.

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Correspondence to Angélique D’Hont.

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Communicated by J. E. Bradshaw.

Louis-Marie Raboin and Jérôme Pauquet contributed equally to this work.

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Raboin, LM., Pauquet, J., Butterfield, M. et al. Analysis of genome-wide linkage disequilibrium in the highly polyploid sugarcane. Theor Appl Genet 116, 701–714 (2008). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00122-007-0703-1

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s00122-007-0703-1

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