Plant Molecular Biology Reporter

, Volume 36, Issue 4, pp 643–652 | Cite as

Identification of QTLs Associated with Conversion of Sucrose to Hexose in Mature Fruit of Japanese Pear

  • Sogo NishioEmail author
  • Toshihiro Saito
  • Shingo Terakami
  • Norio Takada
  • Hidenori Kato
  • Akihiro Itai
  • Toshiya Yamamoto
Original Paper


Sweetness is the most important trait for fruit breeding and is fundamentally determined by both total and individual sugar contents. We analyzed the contents of sucrose, fructose, glucose, and sorbitol in mature fruit in an F1 population derived from crossing modern Japanese pear cultivar ‘Akizuki’ and breeding line ‘373-55’. A genetic linkage map was constructed using simple sequence repeats (SSRs) and single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP). We identified two regions associated with individual sugar contents on linkage group (LG) 1 and LG 7. The percentages of the variance in sucrose, fructose, and glucose explained by the quantitative trait loci (QTLs) were 26.6, 15.9, and 18.5%, respectively, for the region on LG 1, and 22.2, 20.0, and 9.5%, respectively, for the region on LG 7. In both regions, genotypes associated with increases in sucrose were associated with decreases in both fructose and glucose. The 1.5-LOD support intervals of the QTLs on LGs 1 and 7 include SSRs within the regions flanking acid invertase genes PPAIV3 and PPAIV1, respectively. Because acid invertase is a key enzyme in the conversion of sucrose to hexose, these are promising candidates for genes underlying those QTLs and controlling individual sugar contents. We also found one region on LG 11 that explained 21.4% of the variation in total sugar content but was not significantly associated with variation for individual sugars. The information obtained in this study will accelerate research and breeding programs to improve fruit sweetness.


Pyrus pyrifolia Fruit quality Sugars Acid invertase 



We are deeply indebted to all the people involved in the Japanese pear breeding program at the Institute of Fruit Tree and Tea Science, NARO.

Supplementary material

11105_2018_1106_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (383 kb)
Supplementary Fig. 1 Distributions of individual sugars in an F1 population derived from crossing ‘Akizuki’ and ‘373-55’ (PDF 383 kb)
11105_2018_1106_MOESM2_ESM.pdf (380 kb)
Supplementary Fig. 2 Linkage maps of ‘Akizuki’, ‘373-55’, and their integrated map. “CP” indicates that the integrated LG maps were built using the cross-pollination mode of JoinMap v. 4.1. Markers with segregation distortion are identified by asterisks (*P < 0.05; **P < 0.01; ***P < 0.001) (PDF 380 kb)
11105_2018_1106_MOESM3_ESM.pdf (1.9 mb)
Supplementary Fig. 3 Significant QTLs for sucrose (SUC), fructose (FRU), glucose (GLU), sorbitol (SOR), and total sugar content (TSC). “CP” indicates that the integrated maps were built using the cross-pollination mode of JoinMap v. 4.1. Marker loci and significant QTLs are shown to the right of the linkage groups. Boxes and range lines indicate 1-LOD and 1.5-LOD support intervals, respectively. Markers with segregation distortion are identified by asterisks (*P < 0.05; **P < 0.01; ***P < 0.001) (PDF 1995 kb)
11105_2018_1106_MOESM4_ESM.xlsx (101 kb)
ESM 1 (XLSX 101 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sogo Nishio
    • 1
    Email author
  • Toshihiro Saito
    • 1
  • Shingo Terakami
    • 1
  • Norio Takada
    • 1
  • Hidenori Kato
    • 1
  • Akihiro Itai
    • 2
  • Toshiya Yamamoto
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Fruit Tree and Tea ScienceNAROTsukubaJapan
  2. 2.Graduate School of Life and Environmental SciencesKyoto Prefectural UniversitySeikaJapan

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