Enhancement of Leaf Rust Resistance of Siberian Winter Wheat Varieties by Marker-assisted Selection
Cultivation of winter wheat varieties in the West Siberian region of Russia has competitive advantages compared to spring varieties: utilization of spring-summer moisture, early maturation and harvest and a high yield potential. The poor resistance of winter varieties to foliar diseases results in significant yield losses and facilitates the spread of pathogens to the spring wheat cultivars. The present study was conducted to evaluate the effectiveness of molecular markers specific for VRN-1 and Lr loci in selecting winter wheat genotypes resistant to leaf rust. The winter wheat cultivars Biyskaya ozymaya and Filatovka were crossed with spring wheat introgression lines 21-4 and 5366-180 and the spring wheat cultivar Tulaikovskaya 10 carrying LrTt2, LrAsp5 and Lr6Ai#2 loci from Triticum timopheevii, Aegilops speltoides and Thynopyrum intermedium, respectively. To identify winter wheat plants homozygous for target loci, F2 populations were screened with functional markers to VRN-1 genes and with markers specific for alien genetic material. Based on the genotyping analysis of 371 F2 plants a total of 44 homozygous genotypes with winter habit was identified. There were eight genotypes containing Lr loci among them. Evaluation of F2-derived F3–4 families for both seedling and adult resistance showed that only one F3–4 family had moderate susceptible reaction type to the field population of leaf rust. Others ranged from nearly immune to resistant with severity of 5%. The data also indicated the utility of the VRN-1 allele-specific markers for detection of genotypes with winter habit without vernalization at early stages of plant breeding.
Keywordswinter and spring wheats leaf rust VRN-1 genes Lr genes marker-assisted selection
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We thank the Russian Science Foundation (project no. 16-16-00011) for financial support of this study. We thank the Joint Access Center for Artificial Plant Cultivation supported by the IC&G Budgetary Project No. 0324-2015-0005. I.N. Leonova and A.I. Stasyuk have contributed equally to this work.
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