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Trends Plant Sci. 2004 Jul;9(7):325-30.

Association genetics of complex traits in conifers.

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Institute of Forest Genetics, USDA Forest Service and Department of Environmental Horticulture, University of California, Davis, CA, USA.


Association studies are becoming the experimental approach of choice to dissect complex traits in many organisms from humans to model plant systems. The candidate gene based-association approach has several important advantages for complex trait dissection in many coniferous forest tree species, including random mating and unstructured populations, adequate levels of nucleotide diversity, rapid decay of linkage disequilibrium, and precise evaluation of phenotype from clonal or progeny testing. Allele discovery using association approaches should lead to more-efficient methods of marker-assisted breeding and a deeper understanding of genetic adaptation in forest trees.

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