Using chromosome introgression lines to map quantitative trait loci for photosynthesis parameters in rice (Oryza sativa L.) leaves under drought and well-watered field conditions

J. Gu, X. Yin, P.C. Struik, T.J. Stomph, J. Wang

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Abstract

Photosynthesis is fundamental to biomass production, but sensitive to drought. To understand the genetics of leaf photosynthesis, especially under drought, upland rice cv. Haogelao, lowland rice cv. Shennong265, and 94 of their introgression lines (ILs) were studied at flowering and grain filling under drought and well-watered field conditions. Gas exchange and chlorophyll fluorescence measurements were conducted to evaluate eight photosynthetic traits. Since these traits are very sensitive to fluctuations in microclimate during measurements under field conditions, observations were adjusted for microclimatic differences through both a statistical covariant model and a physiological approach. Both approaches identified leaf-to-air vapour pressure difference as the variable influencing the traits most. Using the simple sequence repeat (SSR) linkage map for the IL population, 1–3 quantitative trait loci (QTLs) were detected per trait–stage–treatment combination, which explained between 7.0% and 30.4% of the phenotypic variance of each trait. The clustered QTLs near marker RM410 (the interval from 57.3¿cM to 68.4¿cM on chromosome 9) were consistent over both development stages and both drought and well-watered conditions. This QTL consistency was verified by a greenhouse experiment under a controlled environment. The alleles from the upland rice at this interval had positive effects on net photosynthetic rate, stomatal conductance, transpiration rate, quantum yield of photosystem II (PSII), and the maximum efficiency of light-adapted open PSII. However, the allele of another main QTL from upland rice was associated with increased drought sensitivity of photosynthesis. These results could potentially be used in breeding programmes through marker-assisted selection to improve drought tolerance and photosynthesis simultaneously
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)455-469
JournalJournal of Experimental Botany
Volume63
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2012

Keywords

  • qtl analysis
  • upland rice
  • chlorophyll fluorescence
  • reproductive-stage
  • genetic-variation
  • grain-yield
  • physiological traits
  • plant photosynthesis
  • carbon assimilation
  • advanced backcross

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