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Genetics. 2003 Oct;165(2):759-69.

Population structure and its effect on haplotype diversity and linkage disequilibrium surrounding the xa5 locus of rice (Oryza sativa L.).

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Institute for Genomic Diversity and Department of Plant Breeding, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York 14853, USA.


To assess the usefulness of linkage disequilibrium mapping in an autogamous, domesticated species, we have characterized linkage disequilibrium in the candidate region for xa5, a recessive gene conferring race-specific resistance to bacterial blight in rice. This trait and locus have good mapping information, a tractable phenotype, and available sequence data, but no cloned gene. We sampled 13 short segments from the 70-kb candidate region in 114 accessions of Oryza sativa. Five additional segments were sequenced from the adjacent 45-kb region in resistant accessions to estimate the distance at which linkage disequilibrium decays. The data show significant linkage disequilibrium between sites 100 kb apart. The presence of the xa5 resistant reaction in two ecotypes and in accessions with different haplotypes in the candidate region may indicate multiple origins or genetic heterogeneity for resistance. In addition, genetic differentiation between ecotypes emphasizes the need for controlling for population structure in the design of linkage disequilibrium studies in rice.

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