Table_1_Genome-Wide Association Study to Identify Candidate Loci for Biomass Formation Under Water Deficit in Perennial Ryegrass.DOCX (692.35 kB)
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Table_1_Genome-Wide Association Study to Identify Candidate Loci for Biomass Formation Under Water Deficit in Perennial Ryegrass.DOCX

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posted on 14.01.2021, 06:23 by Kristina Jaškūnė, Andrius Aleliūnas, Gražina Statkevičiūtė, Vilma Kemešytė, Bruno Studer, Steven Yates

Global warming is predicted to impact many agricultural areas, which will suffer from reduced water availability. Due to precipitation changes, mild summer droughts are expected to become more frequent, even in temperate regions. For perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.), an important forage grass of the Poaceae family, leaf growth is a crucial factor determining biomass accumulation and hence forage yield. Although leaf elongation has been shown to be temperature-dependent under normal conditions, the genetic regulation of leaf growth under water deficit in perennial ryegrass is poorly understood. Herein, we evaluated the response to water deprivation in a diverse panel of perennial ryegrass genotypes, employing a high-precision phenotyping platform. The study revealed phenotypic variation for growth-related traits and significant (P < 0.05) differences in leaf growth under normal conditions within the subgroups of turf and forage type cultivars. The phenotypic data was combined with genotypic variants identified using genotyping-by-sequencing to conduct a genome-wide association study (GWAS). Using GWAS, we identified DNA polymorphisms significantly associated with leaf growth reduction under water deprivation. These polymorphisms were adjacent to genes predicted to encode for phytochrome B and a MYB41 transcription factor. The result obtained in the present study will increase our understanding on the complex molecular mechanisms involved in plant growth under water deficit. Moreover, the single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers identified will serve as a valuable resource in future breeding programs to select for enhanced biomass formation under mild summer drought conditions.

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