Genome-wide identification of markers for selecting higher oil content in oil palm.

BMC plant biology

PubMedID: 28558657

Bai B, Wang L, Lee M, Zhang Y, Rahmadsyah , Alfiko Y, Ye BQ, Wan ZY, Lim CH, Suwanto A, Chua NH, Yue GH. Genome-wide identification of markers for selecting higher oil content in oil palm. BMC Plant Biol. 2017;17(1):93.
BACKGROUND
Oil palm (Elaeis guineensis, Jacq.) is the most important source of edible oil. The improvement of oil yield is currently slow in conventional breeding programs due to long generation intervals. Marker-assisted selection (MAS) has the potential to accelerate genetic improvement. To identify DNA markers associated with oil content traits for MAS, we performed quantitative trait loci (QTL) mapping using genotyping by sequencing (GBS) in a breeding population derived from a cross between Deli Dura and Ghana Pisifera, containing 153 F1 trees.

RESULTS
We constructed a high-density linkage map containing 1357 SNPs and 123 microsatellites. The 16 linkage groups (LGs) spanned 1527 cM, with an average marker space of 1.03 cM. One significant and three suggestive QTL for oil to bunch (O/B) and oil to dry mesocarp (O/DM) were mapped on LG1, LG8, and LG10 in a F1 breeding population, respectively. These QTL explained 7.6-13.3% of phenotypic variance. DNA markers associated with oil content in these QTL were identified. Trees with beneficial genotypes at two QTL for O/B showed an average O/B of 30.97%, significantly (P < 0.01) higher than that of trees without any beneficial QTL genotypes (average O/B of 28.24%). QTL combinations showed that the higher the number of QTL with beneficial genotypes, the higher the resulting average O/B in the breeding population.

CONCLUSIONS
A linkage map with 1480 DNA markers was constructed and used to identify QTL for oil content traits. Pyramiding the identified QTL with beneficial genotypes associated with oil content traits using DNA markers has the potential to accelerate genetic improvement for oil yield in the breeding population of oil palm.