, 215:13 | Cite as

Combining ability, gene action and heritability of weevil resistance, storage root yield and yield related-traits in sweetpotato

  • Filson KagimboEmail author
  • Hussein Shimelis
  • Julia Sibiya


The objective of this study was to determine general combining ability (GCA), specific combining ability (SCA), gene action and heritability of weevil (Cylass spp.) resistance, dry matter content (DMC), yield and yield-related components of newly developed sweetpotato clones. Six weevil resistant and six susceptible parents were crossed using a 6 × 6 factorial mating design. The resultant 36 families were evaluated at three locations using a 3 × 12 lattice design with two replications for weevil resistance and yield and related traits in western Tanzania. The GCA effect for females was significant except for percentage marketable root number (PMRN) and percentage marketable root yield (PMRY). Significant GCA effect of males were detected for all traits except PMRY. The SCA effect of families was significant for all traits. With a general predicted ratio (GPR) > 0.5, additive gene action controlled more the expression of total root number (TRN), root yield (RY), DMC, percentage infested root number (PIRN), percentage infested root yield and weevil damage score (WDS), whereas non-additive gene action controlled more the expression of PMRN and PMRY with a < 0.5 GPR. The narrow sense heritability for TRN, RY, DMC, PIRN and WDS were 0.24, 0.56, 0.84, 0.62 and 0.62, while the broad sense heritability for these traits were 0.58, 0.72, 0.93, 0.78 and 0.77, in that order. Four female parents and four male parents were identified as the best general combiners and 13 families recorded the best performance for the evaluated traits. The high heritability for most of the traits studded and presence of both additive and non-additive gene action for the traits suggests that genetic gain can be realized through hybridization and clonal selection in breeding programs. The selected parents and families are useful genetic resources for the development of sweetpotato genotypes resistant to weevils and enhanced root yield, yield components and DMC.


Additive gene action Combining ability Heritability General combining ability Non-additive gene action Selection Specific combining ability Sweetpotato 



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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Filson Kagimbo
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Hussein Shimelis
    • 1
  • Julia Sibiya
    • 1
  1. 1.African Centre for Crop Improvement, School of Agricultural, Earth and Environmental Sciences, College of Agriculture, Engineering and ScienceUniversity of KwaZulu-NatalScottsville, PietermaritzburgSouth Africa
  2. 2.Tanzania Agricultural Research Institute (TARI), Tumbi CentreTaboraTanzania

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