Molecular Breeding

, Volume 32, Issue 1, pp 71–90 | Cite as

Identification of quantitative trait loci contributing to yield and seed quality parameters under terminal drought in barley advanced backcross lines

  • Rajesh Kalladan
  • Sebastian Worch
  • Hardy Rolletschek
  • Vokkaliga T. Harshavardhan
  • Lissy Kuntze
  • Christiane Seiler
  • Nese Sreenivasulu
  • Marion S. Röder


Drought is a major limiting factor for barley production, especially in the primary areas of its cultivation. Wild barley represents a major source of favourable alleles for increasing the genetic variation for multiple traits including resistance to both biotic and abiotic stresses. We used advanced backcross quantitative trait locus (AB-QTL) analysis of a BC3-doubled haploid population developed between the cultivated parent Brenda (Hordeum vulgare ssp. vulgare) and the wild accession HS584 (H. vulgare ssp. spontaneum) to study the contribution of wild barley in improving various agronomic and seed quality traits under post-anthesis drought. The experiment was carried out at two different locations (IPK, Gatersleben and Nordsaat, Böhnshausen) and terminal drought was imposed by withholding water or spraying with potassium iodide at 10 days after flowering under greenhouse or field conditions, respectively. QTL analysis indicated that wild barley contributed favourably to most of the traits studied under both control and drought conditions. A total of seven hot-spot QTL regions with co-localizing QTL for various traits harboured more than 80 % of the stable QTL detected in the present study. For yield and thousand-grain weight and their respective drought tolerance indices, most of the QTL were derived from Brenda. On the other hand, for traits like seed length and seed nitrogen content, all the QTL were contributed by HS584, the parent having higher trait value. A significantly reduced carbon/nitrogen (C/N) ratio in the selected contrasting inferior lines compared to superior ones suggests that C/N ratio could be a potential parameter for screening not just seed quality parameters but also grain weight performance under terminal drought.


AB-QTL analysis Advanced backcross lines Barley C/N ratio Terminal drought Wild relatives 



This research was financially supported by a grant from the German Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) (Project GABI-GRAIN; FKZ: 0315041A).

Supplementary material

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rajesh Kalladan
    • 1
  • Sebastian Worch
    • 1
  • Hardy Rolletschek
    • 1
  • Vokkaliga T. Harshavardhan
    • 1
  • Lissy Kuntze
    • 2
  • Christiane Seiler
    • 1
  • Nese Sreenivasulu
    • 1
  • Marion S. Röder
    • 1
  1. 1.Leibniz Institute of Plant Genetics and Crop Plant Research (IPK)GaterslebenGermany
  2. 2.Nordsaat Saatzucht GmbHLangensteinGermany

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