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Genetic analysis of anthracnose resistance in common bean breeding source germplasm


Anthracnose is a serious disease affecting dry bean production especially in the cool highland areas worldwide. The objective of this research was to study the inheritance of anthracnose resistance in market-class dry beans. A complete diallel set of crosses was generated from nine diverse parents comprising six resistant and three susceptible to anthracnose. The F1 and F2 crosses and parents were artificially inoculated with Colletotriclum lindenumthianum Race-767 in a growth room. There was significant variation for anthracnose resistance among genotypes. General combining ability (GCA) and specific combining ability effects were significant for resistance, indicating importance of both additive and non-additive effects, respectively. Preponderance of GCA effects (66%) suggested that additive effects were more important than non-additive effects (24%), which were also reflected by high heritability estimates (70%), and suggested that simple selection or backcrossing would be useful for improving the resistance in market class varieties. The study was not conclusive on whether epistatic gene action played a major role, but if available it might have biased the dominance gene effects. Reciprocal effects (10%) were not significant (P > 0.05), suggesting that cytoplasmic genes did not play a major role in modifying anthracnose resistance. Parental lines G2333, AB136, NAT002, and NAT003 showed highly negative GCA effects qualifying them as suitable parents for transferring resistance genes to their progenies. A few major genes, 1–3, displaying partial dominance conditioned anthracnose resistance, suggesting a possibility of using marker-assisted selection to improve anthracnose resistance in market-class dry beans.

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Correspondence to John Derera.

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Nkalubo, S.T., Melis, R., Derera, J. et al. Genetic analysis of anthracnose resistance in common bean breeding source germplasm. Euphytica 167, 303–312 (2009).

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  • Anthracnose resistance
  • Breeding dry beans
  • GCA
  • Gene action
  • Market-class dry beans
  • SCA