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Genome‑wide association analysis reveals new targets for carotenoid biofortification in maize

Author: Suwarno, W.B.
Author: Pixley, K.V.
Author: Palacios Rojas, N.
Author: Kaeppler, S.M.
Author: Babu, R.
Year: 2015
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10883/4563
Descriptors: Genomics
Descriptors: Maize
Descriptors: Carotenoids
Abstract: Key message Genome-wide association analysis in CIMMYT’s association panel revealed new favorable native genomic variations in/nearby important genes such as hydroxylases and CCD1 that have potential for carotenoid biofortification in maize. Abstract Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have been used extensively to identify allelic variation for genes controlling important agronomic and nutritional traits in plants. Provitamin A (proVA) enhancing alleles of lycopene epsilon cyclase (LCYE) and β-carotene hydroxylase 1 (CRTRB1), previously identified through candidate-gene based GWAS, are currently used in CIMMYT’s maize breeding program. The objective of this study was to identify genes or genomic regions controlling variation for carotenoid concentrations in grain for CIMMYT’s carotenoid association mapping panel of 380 inbred maize lines, using high-density genome-wide platforms with ~476,000 SNP markers. Population structure effects were minimized by adjustments using principal components and kinship matrix with mixed models. Genome-wide linkage disequilibrium (LD) analysis indicated faster LD decay (3.9 kb; r2 = 0.1) than commonly reported for temperate germplasm, and therefore the possibility of achieving higher mapping resolution with our mostly tropical diversity panel. GWAS for various carotenoids identified CRTRB1, LCYE and other key genes or genomic regions that govern rate-critical steps in the upstream pathway, such as DXS1, GGPS1, and GGPS2 that are known to play important roles in the accumulation of precursor isoprenoids as well as downstream genes HYD5, CCD1, and ZEP1, which are involved in hydroxylation and carotenoid degradation. SNPs at or near all of these regions were identified and may be useful target regions for carotenoid biofortification breeding efforts in maize; for example a genomic region on chromosome 2 explained ~16 % of the phenotypic variance for β-carotene independently of CRTRB1, and a variant of CCD1 that resulted in reduced β-cryptoxanthin degradation was found in lines that have previously been observed to have low proVA degradation rates.
Abstract: Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have been used extensively to identify allelic variation for genes controlling important agronomic and nutritional traits in plants. Provitamin A (proVA) enhancing alleles of lycopene epsilon cyclase (LCYE) and β-carotene hydroxylase 1 (CRTRB1), previously identified through candidate-gene based GWAS, are currently used in CIMMYT’s maize breeding program. The objective of this study was to identify genes or genomic regions controlling variation for carotenoid concentrations in grain for CIMMYT’s carotenoid association mapping panel of 380 inbred maize lines, using high-density genome-wide platforms with ~476,000 SNP markers. Population structure effects were minimized by adjustments using principal components and kinship matrix with mixed models. Genome-wide linkage disequilibrium (LD) analysis indicated faster LD decay (3.9 kb; r2 = 0.1) than commonly reported for temperate germplasm, and therefore the possibility of achieving higher mapping resolution with our mostly tropical diversity panel. GWAS for various carotenoids identified CRTRB1, LCYE and other key genes or genomic regions that govern rate-critical steps in the upstream pathway, such as DXS1, GGPS1, and GGPS2 that are known to play important roles in the accumulation of precursor isoprenoids as well as downstream genes HYD5, CCD1, and ZEP1, which are involved in hydroxylation and carotenoid degradation. SNPs at or near all of these regions were identified and may be useful target regions for carotenoid biofortification breeding efforts in maize; for example a genomic region on chromosome 2 explained ~16 % of the phenotypic variance for β-carotene independently of CRTRB1, and a variant of CCD1 that resulted in reduced β-cryptoxanthin degradation was found in lines that have previously been observed to have low proVA degradation rates.
Language: English
Publisher: Springer Verlag
Copyright: CIMMYT manages Intellectual Assets as International Public Goods. The user is free to download, print, store and share this work. In case you want to translate or create any other derivative work and share or distribute such translation/derivative work, please contact CIMMYT-Knowledge-Center@cgiar.org indicating the work you want to use and the kind of use you intend; CIMMYT will contact you with the suitable license for that purpose.
Type: Article
Place: New York
Journal issue: 2
Journal: Theoretical and Applied Genetics
Journal volume: 128
DOI: 10.1007/s00122-015-2475-3
Audicence: Researchers


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  • Maize
    Maize breeding, phytopathology, entomology, physiology, quality, and biotech

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