Genetic dissection for zinc deficiency tolerance in rice using bi-parental mapping and association analysis

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Lee, JS, Sajise, AGC, Gregorio, GB, Kretzschmer, T, Ismail, AM, Wissuwa, M 2017, 'Genetic dissection for zinc deficiency tolerance in rice using bi-parental mapping and association analysis', Theoretical and Applied Genetics, vol. 130, no. 9, pp. 1903-1914.

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http://dx.doi.org/ 10.1007/s00122-017-2932-2

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Zinc (Zn) deficiency is a widespread soil constraint in rice production. Despite several physiological studies elucidating Zn deficiency tolerance mechanisms, little is known about genetic factors conferring tolerance. To identify QTL associated with root development, biomass accumulation, and grain yield under Zn deficiency, we combined bi-parental QTL mapping in a population of 200 backcross inbred (BC1F6) lines and genome-wide association analysis using 247 k SNP markers across 140 accessions of an indica diversity panel. Three QTLs for Zn deficiency tolerance on chromosomes 3, 6, and 12 co-localized in both approaches and the association analysis detected two additional strong QTL on chromosomes 1 and 9 not present in the bi-parental population. Based on haplotype analysis of the indica panel, biomass consistently increased due to the minor ‘tolerance’ haplotypes, which had frequencies between 13 and 34%. By utilizing the previous transcript data collected from the same Zn-deficient field, we identified one putative candidate gene within the chromosome 6-QTL, which was associated with all traits in both analyses. Gene Os06g44220 was barely expressed under +Zn conditions but strongly upregulated in both root and shoot under stress and consistently more so in the tolerant genotype. Os06g44220 is an uncharacterized gene with expression previously detected only under salinity stress. Four SNP alterations within the promoter region distinguish the two alleles identified and a genotype tolerant to Zn deficiency shares the same allele as salinity tolerant varieties, lending support to the hypothesis that this gene may confer tolerance to both stresses.

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