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    Gibberella ear rot (GER), a prevalent disease caused by Fusarium graminearum, can result in significant yield loss and carcinogenic mycotoxin contamination in maize worldwide. However, only a few quantitative trait loci (QTLs) for GER resistance have been reported. In this study, we evaluated a Chinese recombinant inbred line (RIL) population comprising 204 lines, developed from a cross between a resistant parent DH4866 and a susceptible line T877, in three field trials under artificial inoculation with F. graminearum. The RIL population and their parents were genotyped with an Affymetrix microarray CGMB56K SNP Array. Based on the genetic linkage map constructed using 1,868 bins as markers, 11 QTLs, including five stable QTLs, were identified by individual environment analysis. Joint multiple environments analysis and epistatic interaction analysis revealed six additive and six epistatic (additive × additive) QTLs, respectively. None of the QTLs could explain more than 10% of phenotypic variation, suggesting that multiple minor-effect QTLs contributed to the genetic component of resistance to GER, and both additive and epistatic effects contributed to the genetic architecture of resistance to GER. A novel QTL, qGER4.09, with the largest effect, identified and validated using 588 F2 individuals, was colocalized with genomic regions for Fusarium ear rot and Aspergillus ear rot, indicating that this genetic locus likely confers resistance to multiple pathogens and can potentially be utilized in breeding maize varieties aimed at improving the resistance not only to GER but also other ear rot diseases.


    Guangfei Zhou, Shunfa Li, Liang Ma, Fang Wang, Fuyan Jiang, Yali Sun, Xinsen Ruan, Yu Cao, Qing Wang, Yingying Zhang, Xingming Fan, Xiquan Gao. Mapping and Validation of a Stable Quantitative Trait Locus Conferring Maize Resistance to Gibberella Ear Rot. Plant disease. 2021 Jul;105(7):1984-1991

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    PMID: 33616427

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