Multi-environment analysis of sorghum breeding trials using additive and dominance genomic relationships

Colleen H. Hunt*, Ben J. Hayes, Fred A. van Eeuwijk, Emma S. Mace, David R. Jordan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Key message: Multi-environment models using marker-based kinship information for both additive and dominance effects can accurately predict hybrid performance in different environments. Abstract: Sorghum is an important hybrid crop that is grown extensively in many subtropical and tropical regions including Northern NSW and Queensland in Australia. The highly varying weather patterns in the Australian summer months mean that sorghum hybrids exhibit a great deal of variation in yield between locations. To ultimately enable prediction of the outcome of crossing parental lines, both additive effects on yield performance and dominance interaction effects need to be characterised. This paper demonstrates that fitting a linear mixed model that includes both types of effects calculated using genetic markers in relationship matrices improves predictions. Genotype by environment interactions was investigated by comparing FA1 (single-factor analytic) and FA2 (two-factor analytic) structures. The G×E causes a change in hybrid rankings between trials with a difference of up to 25% of the hybrids in the top 10% of each trial. The prediction accuracies increased with the addition of the dominance term (over and above that achieved with an additive effect alone) by an average of 15% and a maximum of 60%. The percentage of dominance of the total genetic variance varied between trials with the trials with higher broad-sense heritability having the greater percentage of dominance. The inclusion of dominance in the factor analytic models improves the accuracy of the additive effects.Breeders selecting high yielding parents for crossing need to be aware of effects due to environment and dominance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1009–1018
JournalTheoretical and Applied Genetics
Early online date6 Jan 2020
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2020

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