The Genetic Basis of Plant Architecture in 10 Maize Recombinant Inbred Line Populations

Plant Physiology
Qingchun PanJianbing Yan


Plant architecture is a key factor affecting planting density and grain yield in maize (Zea mays). However, the genetic mechanisms underlying plant architecture in diverse genetic backgrounds have not been fully addressed. Here, we performed a large-scale phenotyping of 10 plant architecture-related traits and dissected the genetic loci controlling these traits in 10 recombinant inbred line populations derived from 14 diverse genetic backgrounds. Nearly 800 quantitative trait loci (QTLs) with major and minor effects were identified as contributing to the phenotypic variation of plant architecture-related traits. Ninety-two percent of these QTLs were detected in only one population, confirming the diverse genetic backgrounds of the mapping populations and the prevalence of rare alleles in maize. The numbers and effects of QTLs are positively associated with the phenotypic variation in the population, which, in turn, correlates positively with parental phenotypic and genetic variations. A large proportion (38.5%) of QTLs was associated with at least two traits, suggestive of the frequent occurrence of pleiotropic loci or closely linked loci. Key developmental genes, which previously were shown to affect plant architecture in muta...Continue Reading


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Related Concepts

Quantitative Trait Loci
Corn extract
Inbred Strain
Candidate Disease Gene
Zea mays
Genome Mapping
Zea mays antigen

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