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Bread wheat ( Triticum aestivum L.) is an economically and nutritionally important cereal crop in the Mediterranean region. Characterization of wheat germplasm by means of DNA fingerprinting techniques provides a tool to assess genetic diversity and to identify varieties. In this study, six Tunisian bread wheat cultivars were characterized by AFLP and SSR markers. Five AFLP primer pairs showed clear different patterns and seems to be the most suitable for analysis of the bread wheat varieties. Three SSR primers were polymorphic with more than two alleles. The pairwise genetic similarities (GS) based on these molecular markers were calculated and used to construct a dendrogram that allowed the discrimination of the six cultivars. The GS among the six varieties ranged from 0.79 to 0.36. The six varieties used in this work clustered into four groups using either AFLP or SSR markers. A high GS was found between Tebecca and Vaga Varieties which have a similar pedigree.

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The bread wheat germplasm comprising of 222 accessions was evaluated for tolerance to Sitobion avenae. A 1000-kernel weight loss rate and an unbiased test of the tolerance were used to quantify tolerance trait. The population structure analysis revealed three subpopulations in this wheat collection. After 103 SSR loci which evenly covered all wheat chromosomes were scanned for association, eight SSR loci significantly associated with S. avenae tolerance. The information reported in this study would be helpful for wise utilization of the S. avenae tolerant germplasm and selection of parental lines in wheat breeding programs.

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Genetic structure of 142 parent lines of sorghum [Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench] was analyzed using model-based approach based on SSR markers. Forty-one selected from 103 SSR markers were used to analyze the parent lines, which generated 189 alleles revealed by each marker ranging from 2 to 11 with an average of 4.6 per marker. The polymorphic information content (PIC) value was 0.543 with a range of 0.089 to 0.850. All the parent lines were assigned to 7 subgroups, named Kafir, Kaoliang, Feterita, Shallu, Hegari, Milo and Durra. Parent lines without clear pedigree record were clustered into their corresponding groups, and genetic components of each line were estimated by Q-values. Information of this study would be useful for breeders to conclude their genetic background and select appropriate parents for germplasm improvement and hybrid breeding, and thus improve the efficiency of breeding programs.

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Availability of markers that distinguish commercially important premium Basmati rice varieties from cheaper Basmati or non-Basmati indica rice varieties is of interest to exporters, commercial suppliers and consumers to ensure the varietal purity of Basmati rice supplies. In this study, a fingerprint database of 27 rice varieties including commercially important traditional Basmati (TB), cross-bred (evolved) Basmati and some non-Basmati indica rice varieties has been prepared using 50 microsatellite markers. A total of 271 electromorphs (alleles) were detected at 50 SSR (simple sequence repeat) loci, 92 of which were observed only in 2–10 of the 16 Basmati rice varieties. Notably, 7–10 of the sixteen Basmati rice varieties had the same Basmati specific electromorphs at RM562, RM551 and RM547 loci. Alarge number of unique (22) and null (16) electromorphs were noticed in Basmati rice varieties. A combination of four SSR markers (RM224, RM248, RM547 and RM594) can be used to differentiate all the 27 rice varieties. Specific SSR markers have been identified for the authentication of Premium Basmati rice cultivars such as Taraori Basmati (RM547, RM594 and RM511), Basmati 370 (RM252, RM426 and RM527), Karnal Local (RM248, RM423 and RM488) and Pusa 1121 (RM252, RM400 and RM410), and for the detection of adulterant like Sharbati (RM215, RM423 and RM259). SSR database reported here, shall broaden the list of SSR markers already recommended for varietal identification and detection of adulteration in Basmati rice supplies.

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, T.Y., Duncan, R.R., Gonzalez-Candelas, F., Kresovich, S. 1996. Multiple methods for the identification of polymorphic simple sequence repeats (SSRs) in sorghum ( Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench). Theor. Appl. Genet. 93 :190

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The aphid Sitobion avenae F. is one of the most harmful pests of wheat growth in the world. A primary field screening test was carried out to evaluate the S. avenae resistance of 527 wheat landraces from Shaanxi. The results indicated that 25 accessions (4.74%) were resistant to S. avenae in the three consecutive seasons, of which accession S849 was highly resistant, and seven accessions were moderately resistant. The majority of S. avenae resistant accessions come from Qinling Mountains. Then, the genetic variability of a set of 33 accessions (25 S. avenae resistant and 8 S. avenae susceptible) originating from Qinling Mountains have been assessed by 20 morphological traits and 99 simple sequence repeat markers (SSRs). Morphological traits and SSRs displayed a high level of genetic diversity within 33 accessions. The clustering of the accessions based on morphological traits and SSR markers showed significant discrepancy according to the geographical distribution, resistance to S. avenae and species of accessions. The highly and moderately resistant landrace accessions were collected from the middle and the east part of Qinling Mountains with similar morphology characters, for example slender leaves with wax, lower leaf area, and high ear density. These S. avenae resistant landraces can be used in wheat aphid resistance breeding as valuable resources.

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The analysis of polymorphism between 46 maize inbred lines with known genetic background and the classification of these lines in related groups was carried out by means of morphological, isoenzyme and genetic markers. The degree of relationship between the lines was determined using cluster analysis. Only a very limited extent of allele polymorphism could be detected in isoenzyme analyses. Nevertheless, on the basis of RAPD and SSR markers, all the lines could be distinguished from each other. Grouping lines into related groups it was found that, while the individual marker systems only partially reflected the actual relationships, a joint analysis of genetic markers and morphological data revealed a close correlation between the groups formed on the dendrogram and genetic backgrounds.

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Cereal Research Communications
Authors: S.M. Pirseyedi, A. Kumar, F. Ghavami, J.B. Hegstad, M. Mergoum, M. Mazaheri, S.F. Kianian, and E.M. Elias

Fusarium head blight (FHB) damage in durum wheat (Triticum turgidum L. var. durum Desf., turgidum) inflicted massive economic losses worldwide. Meanwhile, FHB resistant durum wheat germplasm is extremely limited. ‘Tunisian108’ is a newly identified tetraploid wheat with FHB resistance. However, genomic regions in ‘Tunisian108’ that significantly associated with FHB resistance are yet unclear. Therefore, a population of 171 backcross inbred lines (BC1F7) derived from a cross between ‘Tunisian108’ and a susceptible durum cultivar ‘Ben’ was characterized. Fusarium graminearum (R010, R1267, and R1322) was point inoculated (greenhouse) or spawn inoculated (field) in 2010 and 2011. Disease severity, Fusarium-damaged kernel (FDK) and mycotoxins were measured. Analysis of variance showed significant genotype and genotype by environment effect on all traits. Approximately 8% of the lines in field and 25% of the lines in greenhouse were more resistance than Tunisian108. A framework linkage map of 267 DArt plus 62 SSR markers was developed representing 239 unique loci and covering a total distance of 1887.6 cM. Composite interval mapping revealed nine QTL for FHB severity, four QTL for DON, and four QTL for FDK on seven chromosomes. Two novel QTL, Qfhb.ndsu-3BL and Qfhb.ndsu-2B, were identified for disease severity, explaining 11 and 6% of the phenotypic variation, respectively. Also, a QTL with large effect on severity and a QTL with negative effect on FDK on chromosome 5A were identified. Importantly, a novel region on chromosome 2B was identified with multiple FHB resistance. Validation on these QTL would facilitate the durum wheat resistance breeding.

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Grain Protein Content (GPC) of wheat is significant for enhanced nutritional value and is one of the most important aspects effecting pasta and bread making quality as well. Seventy seven Pakistani wheat varieties and advance lines were analysed to access the allelic distribution at microsatellite Xuhw89 locus using functional SSR marker. Overall, 42% of tested wheat genotypes were found to carry 126 + 130-bp allele while a 126-bp allele was detected in 58% of genotypes. A target band of 126-bp was amplified in all tested genotypes, however, an additional band of 130-bp was also detected along with 126-bp band in 32 genotypes. Genotypes i.e. (Punjab-96) total soluble protein and (MEXI PAK) globulin with 126 + 130-bp allele while (Faisalabad-2008) salt soluble protein and (TC-4928) albumin with allele of 126-bp depicted highest grain protein content. The alleles identification associated with maximum grain protein content in Pakistani wheat germplasm will assist in accelerating the breeding program in future.

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Drought is a severe abiotic stress that affects wheat production worldwide. In order to identify candidate genes for tolerance to water stress in wheat, sequences of 11 genes that have function of drought tolerance in other plant species were used to identify the wheat ortholog genes via homology searching in the wheat EST database. Atotal of 11 primer pairs were identified and amplified PCR products in wheat. Of them, 10 STS markers were mapped on 11 chromosomes in a set of nulli-tetrasomic lines of ‘Chinese Spring’ wheat; six were mapped on chromosomes 1A, 1B, 4B, 7A, 2B and 5D, respectively, in a spring wheat mapping population (POP1). The marker XTaABH1 mapped on 7A in POP1 was the only one mapped but characterized in a winter wheat mapping population (POP2) for grain yield, kernel weight and diameter, and height in four-field trials applied different water stress or irrigation. The marker XTaABH1 was significantly associated with grain yield under rainfed condition, with kernel weight under terminal stress and non-irrigation conditions, with kernel diameter and height under non-irrigated condition. The STS primers, map information and marker-trait association produced in the currently study would be of interest to researchers working on drought tolerance.

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