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Mol Genet Genomics. 2019 Jul 9. doi: 10.1007/s00438-019-01586-4. [Epub ahead of print]

Combination of multi-locus genome-wide association study and QTL mapping reveals genetic basis of tassel architecture in maize.

Author information

1
Key Laboratory of Biology and Genetic Improvement of Maize in Southwest Region, Maize Research Institute, Sichuan Agricultural University, Chengdu, 611130, China.
2
Crop Research Institute, Sichuan Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Chengdu, 610066, China.
3
Chongqing Yudongnan Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Chongqing, 408000, China.
4
Institute of Animal Nutrition, Sichuan Agricultural University, Chengdu, 611130, China.
5
Institute of Agro-products Processing Science and Technology, Sichuan Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Chengdu, 610066, China.
6
Key Laboratory of Biology and Genetic Improvement of Maize in Southwest Region, Maize Research Institute, Sichuan Agricultural University, Chengdu, 611130, China. gefei@sicau.edu.cn.
7
Key Laboratory of Biology and Genetic Improvement of Maize in Southwest Region, Maize Research Institute, Sichuan Agricultural University, Chengdu, 611130, China. pangt@sicau.edu.cn.

Abstract

Maize tassel architecture is a complex quantitative trait that is significantly correlated with biomass yield and grain yield. The present study evaluated the major trait of maize tassel architecture, namely, tassel branch number (TBN), in an association population of 359 inbred lines and an IBM Syn 10 population of 273 doubled haploid lines across three environments. Approximately 43,958 high-quality single nucleotide polymorphisms were utilized to detect significant QTNs associated with TBN based on new multi-locus genome-wide association study methods. There were 30, 38, 73, 40, 47, and 53 QTNs associated with tassel architecture that were detected using the FastmrEMMA, FastmrMLM, EM-BLASSO, mrMLM, pkWMEB, and pLARmEB models, respectively. Among these QTNs, 51 were co-identified by at least two of these methods. In addition, 12 QTNs were consistently detected across multiple environments. Furthermore, 19 QTLs distributed on chromosomes 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, and 7 were detected in 3 environments and the BLUP model based on 6618 bin markers, which explained 3.64-10.96% of the observed phenotypic variations in TBN. Of these, three QTLs were co-detected in two environments. One QTN associated with TBN was localized to one QTL. Approximately 55 candidate genes were detected by common QTNs and LD criteria. One candidate gene, Zm00001d016615, was identified as a putative target of the RA1 gene. Meanwhile, RA1 was previously validated to plays an important role in tassel development. In addition, the newly identified candidate genes Zm00001d003939, Zm00001d030212, Zm00001d011189, and Zm00001d042794 have been reported to involve in a spikelet meristem identity module. The findings of the present study improve our understanding of the genetic basis of tassel architecture in maize.

KEYWORDS:

Maize; Multi-locus GWAS; QTL; QTNs; Tassel branch number

PMID:
31289944
DOI:
10.1007/s00438-019-01586-4

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