Identification and validation of QTLs for salt tolerance during vegetative growth in tomato by selective genotyping

Majid R. Foolad, L. P. Zhang, G. Y. Lin

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The purpose of this study was to identify quantitative trait loci (QTLs) for salt tolerance (ST) during vegetative growth (VG) in tomato by distributional extreme analysis and compare them with the QTLs previously identified for this trait. A BC1 population (N = 792) of a cross between a moderately salt-sensitive Lycopersicon esculentum Mill. breeding line (NC84173, maternal and recurrent parent) and a salt-tolerant L. pimpinellifolium (Jusl.) Mill. accession (LA722) was evaluated for ST in solution cultures containing 700 mM NaCl + 70 mM CaCl2 (electrical conductivity, EC ≈ 64 dS/m and Ψw ≈ -35.2 bars). Thirty-seven BC1 plants (4.7% of the total) that exhibited the highest ST were selected (referred to as the selected population), grown to maturity in greenhouse pots and self-pollinated to produce BC1S1 progeny seeds. The 37 selected BC1S1 progeny families were evaluated for ST and their average performance was compared with that of the parental BC1 population before selection. A realized heritability of 0.50 was obtained for ST in this population. The 37 selected BC1 plants were subjected to restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) analysis using 115 markers, and marker allele frequencies were determined. Allele frequencies for the same markers were also determined in an unselected BC1 population (N = 119) of the same cross. A trait-based marker analysis (TBA), which measures differences in marker allele frequencies between selected and unselected populations, was used to identify marker-linked QTLs. Five genomic regions were detected on chromosomes 1, 3, 5, 6, and 11 bearing significant QTLs for ST. Except for the QTL on chromosome 3, all QTLs had positive alleles contributed from the salt tolerant parent LA722. Of the five QTLs, three (those on chromosomes 1, 3, and 5) were previously identified for this trait in another study, and thus were validated here. Only one of the major QTLs that was identified in our previous study was not detected here. This high level of conformity between the results of the two studies indicates the genuine nature of the identified QTLs and their potential usefulness for ST breeding using marker-assisted selection (MAS). A few BC1S1 families were identified with most or all of the QTLs and with a ST comparable to that of LA722. These families should be useful for the development of salt tolerant tomato lines via MAS.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)444-454
Number of pages11
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jan 1 2001

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biotechnology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics


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