Table_6_Genetic Basis of Variation in Rice Seed Storage Protein (Albumin, Globulin, Prolamin, and Glutelin) Content Revealed by Genome-Wide Association Analysis.xlsx

Rice seed storage protein (SSP) is an important source of nutrition and energy. Understanding the genetic basis of SSP content and mining favorable alleles that control it will be helpful for breeding new improved cultivars. An association analysis for SSP content was performed to identify underlying genes using 527 diverse Oryza sativa accessions grown in two environments. We identified more than 107 associations for five different traits, including the contents of albumin (Alb), globulin (Glo), prolamin (Pro), glutelin (Glu), and total SSP (Total). A total of 28 associations were located at previously reported QTLs or intervals. A lead SNP sf0709447538, associated for Glu content in the indica subpopulation in 2015, was further validated in near isogenic lines NIL(Zhenshan97) and NIL(Delong208), and the Glu phenotype had significantly difference between two NILs. The association region could be target for map-based cloning of the candidate genes. There were 13 associations in regions close to grain-quality-related genes; five lead single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) were located less than 20 kb upstream from grain-quality-related genes (PG5a, Wx, AGPS2a, RP6, and, RM1). Several starch-metabolism-related genes (AGPS2a, OsACS6, PUL, GBSSII, and ISA2) were also associated with SSP content. We identified favorable alleles of functional candidate genes, such as RP6, RM1, Wx, and other four candidate genes by haplotype analysis and expression pattern. Genotypes of RP6 and RM1 with higher Pro were not identified in japonica and exhibited much higher expression levels in indica group. The lead SNP sf0601764762, repeatedly detected for Alb content in 2 years in the whole association population, was located in the Wx locus that controls the synthesis of amylose. And Alb content was significantly and negatively correlated with amylose content and the level of 2.3 kb Wx pre-mRNA examined in this study. The associations or candidate genes identified would provide new insights into the genetic basis of SSP content that will help in developing rice cultivars with improved grain nutritional quality through marker-assisted breeding.