Grain dormancy provides protection against pre-harvest sprouting (PHS) in cereals. Composite interval mapping and association analyses were performed to identify quantitative trait loci (QTL) contributing grain dormancy in a doubled haploid (DH) barley population (ND24260 × Flagship) consisting of 321 lines genotyped with DArT markers. Harvest-ripe grain collected from three field experiments was germinated over a 7-day period to determine a weighted germination index for each line. DH lines displaying moderate to high levels of grain dormancy were identified; however, both parental lines were non-dormant and displayed rapid germination within the first two days of testing. Genetic analysis identified two QTL on chromosome 5H that were expressed consistently in each of the three environments. One QTL (donated by Flagship) was located close to the centromeric region of chromosome 5H (qSDFlag), accounting for up to 15% of the phenotypic variation. A second QTL with a larger effect (from ND24260) was detected on chromosome 5HL (qSDND), accounting for up to 35% of the phenotypic variation. qSDFlag and qSDND displayed an epistatic interaction and DH lines that had the highest levels of grain dormancy carried both genes. We demonstrate that qSDND in the ND24260 × Flagship DH population is positioned proximal and independent to the well-characterised SD2 region that is associated with both high levels of dormancy and inferior malt quality. This indicates that it should be possible to develop cultivars that combine acceptable malting quality and adequate levels of grain dormancy for protection against PHS by utilizing these alternate QTL.
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This research was supported by the Grains Research and Development Corporation of Australia through a Post-graduate Research Scholarship (GRS141), Barley Breeding Australia—North Node (DAQ00110), and the Barley Grains Quality: Barley Grains Defect (DAW00186) project. The authors wish to acknowledge Mr Gary Bloustien (DEEDI) for planting and maintenance of the 2010 field trials, Ms Ellena Shaw (University of Queensland) for assistance in the field, and Ms Susan Fletcher (DEEDI) for assistance in statistical analyses of the data.
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Hickey, L.T., Lawson, W., Arief, V.N. et al. Grain dormancy QTL identified in a doubled haploid barley population derived from two non-dormant parents. Euphytica 188, 113–122 (2012). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10681-011-0577-9
- DArT genotyping
- Germination index
- Malt quality
- Marker assisted selection
- Pre-harvest sprouting