Genetic analysis of potato tuber quality traits

J.S. Werij

Research output: Thesisinternal PhD, WU


 In this thesis the results of the four year project P5 within the Centre for BioSystems Genomics ( are described. The intention of this project was to gain understanding of the genetic principles underlying a series of different potato tuber quality traits and the development of molecular markers linked to the traits of interest. Molecular markers that can be used in breeding programs with the aim of producing potato varieties with improved quality. To provide a window in which the research of this thesis can be placed, a review of the current status of quality genetics in potato is given in chapter 1. Here the different quality traits applicable for potato are described and different breeding methodologies discussed. Enzymatic discoloration (ED) of potato tubers was investigated in chapter 2. QTL analysis of the trait itself an it’s potential substrates was performed in combination with an allele specificity study (including expression analysis) on the candidate genes PPO. In chapter 3, potato starch related traits and the underlying starch biosynthesis and degradation are investigated by a QTL analysis in combination with a candidate gene approach. Furthermore, in chapter 4 we analyzed potato tuber metabolic content through liquid chromatography-time of flight mass spectrometry (LC-QTOF MS). This resulted in a large set of mass peaks. Clustering of the signals through a multivariate mass spectra reconstruction strategy revealed reconstructed metabolites (ea centrotypes). Quantitative Trait Locus (QTL) analysis of the centrotypes revealed over 800 metabolite QTLs (mQTLs), distributed over all 12 chromosomes. To investigate the contribution of the metabolome to phenotypic traits, the mQTL results were compared with the QTL results for tuber flesh colour (raw and after-cooking) and total tuber protein content. Finally in chapter 5, the general discussion, the results obtained in the preceding chapters are discussed and placed in the bigger perspective of finding tools for breeding for quality traits in potato. Prospects on the basis of these results and an outlook for breeding for quality are presented as well. 

Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
Awarding Institution
  • Wageningen University
  • Visser, Richard, Promotor
  • Bachem, Christian, Co-promotor
Award date18 Nov 2011
Place of Publication[S.l.]
Print ISBNs9789461730923
Publication statusPublished - 2011


  • solanum tuberosum
  • potatoes
  • plant breeding
  • tubers
  • quality
  • traits
  • genetic mapping
  • genome analysis
  • genetic analysis


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