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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2020

Genetic structure of a germplasm for hybrid breeding in rye (Secale cereale L.)

Vendelbo, Nikolaj M.; Sarup, Pernille; Orabi, Jihad; Kristensen, Peter S.; Jahoor, Ahmed


Rye (Secale cereale L.) responds strongly to changes in heterozygosity with hybrids portraying strong heterosis effect on all developmental and yielding characteristics. In order to achieve the highest potential heterosis effect parental lines must originate from genetically distinct gene pools. Here we report the first comprehensive SNP-based population study of an elite germplasm using fertilization control system for hybrid breeding in rye that is genetically different to the predominating P-type. In total 376 inbred lines from Nordic Seed Germany GmbH were genotyped for 4419 polymorphic SNPs. The aim of this study was to confirm and quantify the genetic separation of parental populations, unveil their genetic characteristics and investigate underlying population structures. Through a palette of complimenting analysis, we confirmed a strong genetic differentiation (F-ST = 0.332) of parental populations validating the germplasms suitability for hybrid breeding. These were, furthermore, found to diverge considerably in several features with the maternal population portraying a strong population structure characterized by a narrow genetic profile, small effective population size and high genome-wise linkage disequilibrium. We propose that the employed male-sterility system putatively constitutes a population determining parameter by influencing the rate of introducing novel genetic variation to the parental populations. Functional analysis of linkage blocks led to identification of a conserved segment on the distal 4RL chromosomal region annotated to the Rfp3 male-fertility restoration 'Pampa' type gene. Findings of our study emphasized the immediate value of comprehensive population studies on elite breeding germplasms as a pre-requisite for application of genomic-based breeding techniques, introgression of novel material and to support breeder decision-making.

Published in

2020, volume: 15, number: 10, article number: e0239541

Authors' information

Vendelbo, Nikolaj M.
Aarhus University
Sarup, Pernille
Nordic Seed AS
Orabi, Jihad
Nordic Seed A/S
Kristensen, Peter S.
Nordic Seed Germany
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Plant Breeding
Nordic Seed A/S

UKÄ Subject classification

Genetics and Breeding

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