To study inheritance of Malus sieboldii-derived apple proliferation resistance, 14 cross combinations were performed with the tetraploid apomictic M. sieboldii and first and second generation parental lines as donor of resistance and Malus x domestica scion cultivars and apple rootstocks as donor of pomological traits. In the progeny examined mainly three classes were present consisting of mother-like plants with the allele composition of the maternal apomict (ML), hybrids based on fertilization of an unreduced egg cell (hybrid I), and fully recombinant plants (hybrid II). Two-year screening of inoculated plants in the nursery revealed that progeny classes ML and H I responded similarly to infection and that about half of the progeny showed satisfactory resistance. No appropriate resistance was identified in progeny class H II. This might be due to the fact that in fully recombinant offspring M. sieboldii haplotypes have been reduced from 4n to 1-2n or were entirely lost. Following nursery-growing, promising trees were evaluated for six more years in the orchard. Nearly all of them showed satisfactory resistance but were mostly less productive and more vigorous than trees on clonal standard rootstock M9. However, mainly among the offspring of progeny 4608 × M9, resistant genotypes were identified showing pomological properties similar to M9.
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We are indebted to late Hanna Schmidt for providing most of the apomictic genotypes used in this project and her engaged support of the breeding work. We thank Stella Grando and Claudia Bisognin (Fondazione E. Mach, San Michele, Italy) for providing unpublished SSR data. We also thank Felix Hergenhahn for his excellence in growing and inoculating the planting material and Constance Berwarth for technical assistance.
This study was in part supported by the Province of Trentino, Italy (Project Scopazzi del Melo – Apple Proliferation, SMAP). The major part was funded by the institutions of the authors themselves.
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Seemüller, E., Gallinger, J., Jelkmann, W. et al. Inheritance of apple proliferation resistance by parental lines of apomictic Malus sieboldii as donor of resistance in rootstock breeding. Eur J Plant Pathol 151, 767–779 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10658-017-1412-5
- ‘Candidatus Phytoplasma mali’
- Genetic resistance
- Latent apple viruses
- Malus x domestica
- Pomological traits
- Resistance screening