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Genetics. Nov 2000; 156(3): 1309–1322.
PMCID: PMC1461308

Genetic basis of climatic adaptation in scots pine by bayesian quantitative trait locus analysis.


We examined the genetic basis of large adaptive differences in timing of bud set and frost hardiness between natural populations of Scots pine. As a mapping population, we considered an "open-pollinated backcross" progeny by collecting seeds of a single F(1) tree (cross between trees from southern and northern Finland) growing in southern Finland. Due to the special features of the design (no marker information available on grandparents or the father), we applied a Bayesian quantitative trait locus (QTL) mapping method developed previously for outcrossed offspring. We found four potential QTL for timing of bud set and seven for frost hardiness. Bayesian analyses detected more QTL than ANOVA for frost hardiness, but the opposite was true for bud set. These QTL included alleles with rather large effects, and additionally smaller QTL were supported. The largest QTL for bud set date accounted for about a fourth of the mean difference between populations. Thus, natural selection during adaptation has resulted in selection of at least some alleles of rather large effect.

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