In vitro screening and QTL analysis for drought tolerance in diploid potato

A.M. Anithakumari, O. Dolstra, B. Vosman, R.G.F. Visser, C.G. van der Linden

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)


Drought stress is a major abiotic constraint limiting crop production worldwide. Screening for drought tolerance and the traits that enhance drought tolerance is not straightforward in large mapping populations. In this study, we investigated the possibility of screening a mapping population in vitro for PEG-induced water deficit stress and recovery potential. We have measured several shoot and root growth parameters or traits in the C × E diploid potato mapping population. Significant variation was observed for genotype-specific responses to water deficit and recovery potential. Genetic variation and heritability estimates were high to very high for the measured traits depending on growth conditions. In order to identify potato QTLs for drought tolerance and recovery potential an SNP marker-rich integrated linkage map was used. A total of 23 QTLs were detected under control, stress and recovery treatments explaining 10.3–22.4% of the variance for each phenotypic trait. Among these, 10 QTLs were located on chromosome 2. Three QTLs involved in the important trait root to shoot ratio were identified on linkage groups 2, 3 and 8. These loci explained together 41.1% of the variance for this trait, and may be breeding targets for stress tolerance and yield in the field as well. The SNP markers derived from EST sequences underlying these QTLs led to the identification of putative candidate genes for further study in potato. This study constitutes the first knowledge of in vitro screening of a mapping population for drought tolerance in potato.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)357-369
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2011


  • water-stress
  • solanum-tuberosum
  • polyethylene glycols
  • gene-expression
  • tissue-culture
  • grown plants
  • rflp maps
  • deficit
  • traits
  • clones

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