Genetic Dissection of an Elite Rice Hybrid Revealed That Heterozygotes Are Not Always Advantageous for Performance
J. P. Hua, Y. Z. Xing, C. G. Xu, X. L. Sun, S. B. Yu, and Qifa Zhang.
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Genetics 162: 1885?895 (December 2002)
National Key Laboratory of Crop Genetic Improvement, National Center of Crop Molecular Breeding, Huazhong Agricultural University, Wuhan 430070, China
Corresponding author: Qifa Zhang, Huazhong Agricultural University, Wuhan 430070, China., firstname.lastname@example.org (E-mail)
Communicating editor: A. PATERSON
We introduced an experimental design that produced an "immortalized F2" population allowing for complete dissection of genetic components underlying quantitative traits. Data for yield and three component traits of the immortalized F2 were collected from replicated field trials over 2 years. Using 231 marker loci, we resolved the genetic effects into individual components and assessed relative performance of all the genotypes at both single- and two-locus levels. Single-locus analysis detected 40 QTL for the four traits. Dominance effects for about one-half of the QTL were negative, resulting in little "net" positive dominance effect. Correlation between genotype heterozygosity and trait performance was low. Large numbers of digenic interactions, including AA, AD, and DD, were detected for all the traits, with AA as the most prevalent interaction. Complementary two-locus homozygotes frequently performed the best among the nine genotypes of many two-locus combinations. While cumulative small advantages over two-locus combinations may partly explain the genetic basis of heterosis of the hybrid as double heterozygotes frequently demonstrated marginal advantages, double heterozygotes were never the best genotypes in any of the two-locus combinations. It was concluded that heterozygotes were not necessarily advantageous for trait performance even among genotypes derived from such a highly heterotic hybrid.