Pedigree-based analysis in multi-parental diploid rose populations reveals QTLs for cercospora leaf spot disease resistance
Cercospora leaf spot (CLS) (Cercospora rosicola) is a major fungal disease of roses (Rosa sp.) in the southeastern U.S. Developing CLS-resistant cultivars offers a potential solution to reduce pesticide use. Yet, no work has been performed on CLS resistance. This study aimed to identify QTLs and to characterize alleles for resistance to CLS. The study used pedigree-based QTL analysis to dissect the genetic basis of CLS resistance using two multi-parental diploid rose populations (TX2WOB and TX2WSE) evaluated across five years in two Texas locations. A total 38 QTLs were identified across both populations and distributed over all linkage groups. Three QTLs on LG3, LG4, and LG6 were consistently mapped over multiple environments. The LG3 QTL was mapped in a region between 18.9 and 27.8 Mbp on the Rosa chinensis genome assembly. This QTL explained 13 to 25% of phenotypic variance. The LG4 QTL detected in the TX2WOB population spanned a 35.2 to 39.7 Mbp region with phenotypic variance explained (PVE) up to 48%. The LG6 QTL detected in the TX2WSE population was localized to 17.9 to 33.6 Mbp interval with PVE up to 36%. Also, this study found multiple degrees of favorable allele effects (q-allele) associated with decreasing CLS at major loci. Ancestors ‘OB’, ‘Violette’, and PP-M4-4 were sources of resistance q-alleles. These results will aid breeders in parental selection to develop CLS-resistant rose cultivars. Ultimately, high throughput DNA tests that target major loci for CLS could be developed for routine use in a DNA-informed breeding program.
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