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Genes Genet Syst. 2002 Feb;77(1):23-9.

Loss of chromosomes 2R and 5RS in octoploid triticale selected for agronomic traits.

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Institute of Crop Breeding and Cultivation, CAAS, Beijing, China.


The advanced lines of octoploid triticale which have been bred for nearly a half century in China show significant improvements in agronomic traits such as plant height, fertility, threshability, maturity and seed plumpness, although no intentional cytological selection had been performed. In this study, eight primary and six advanced lines were analyzed by fluorescence and genomic in situ hybridization to elucidate their chromosome constitutions. In the advanced lines, about 70% of the plants examined had 2n = 56 chromosomes (range: 50 to 58). Almost all advanced lines, however, had lost rye chromosome 2R and the short arm of 5R (5RS). The exceptions were lines Y1005 and Y4683: The former had lost only the 2R chromosome and the latter only 5RS. The reduction of rye chromosomes was compensated by an extra pair of 2D or A-genome (possibly 2A) chromosomes in plants with 2n = 56. This suggests that the loss of 2R and 5RS chromosomes contributes to the improvement of octoploid triticale. Since the plants with chromosome 2R are non-free threshing and chromosome 2D of synthetic wheat is known to carry the Tg (tenacious glumes) gene, it is possible that chromosome 2R carries a gene affecting the threshability, and we carried out selection to remove it. We also discuss the possible relationshipbetween 5RS and the genetic stability of octoploid triticale.

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