Fungal infection by Fusarium verticillioides is cause of prevalent maize disease leading to substantial reductions in yield and grain quality worldwide. Maize resistance to the fungus may occur at different developmental stages, from seedling to maturity. The breeding of resistant maize genotypes may take advantage of the identification of quantitative trait loci (QTL) responsible for disease resistance already commenced at seedling level. The Multi-parent Advance Generation Intercross (MAGIC) population was used to conduct high-definition QTL mapping for Fusarium seedling rot (FSR) resistance using rolled towel assay. Infection severity level, seedling weight and length were measured on 401 MAGIC maize recombinant inbred lines (RILs). QTL mapping was performed on reconstructed RIL haplotypes. One-fifth of the MAGIC RILs were resistant to FSR and 10 QTL were identified. For FSR, two QTL were detected at 2.8 Mb and 241.8 Mb on chromosome 4, and one QTL at 169.6 Mb on chromosome 5. Transcriptomic and sequencing information generated on the MAGIC founder lines was used to guide the identification of eight candidate genes within the identified FSR QTL. We conclude that the rolled towel assay applied to the MAGIC maize population provides a fast and cost-effective method to identify QTL and candidate genes for early resistance to F. verticillioides in maize.
- Genome Wide
- Rolled Towel