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Open Access Research article

qDTY 12.1 : a locus with a consistent effect on grain yield under drought in rice

Krishna Kumar Mishra123, Prashant Vikram1, Ram Baran Yadaw3, BP Mallikarjuna Swamy1, Shalabh Dixit1, Ma Teresa Sta Cruz1, Paul Maturan1, Shailesh Marker2 and Arvind Kumar1*

Author Affiliations

1 International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), DAPO Box 7777, Metro Manila, Philippines

2 Sam Higginbottom Institute of Agriculture, Technology & Sciences, Allahabad 211007UP, India

3 Nepal Agricultural Research Council (NARC), Kathmandu, Nepal

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BMC Genetics 2013, 14:12  doi:10.1186/1471-2156-14-12

Published: 26 February 2013

Abstract

Background

Selection for grain yield under drought is an efficient criterion for improving the drought tolerance of rice. Recently, some drought-tolerant rice varieties have been developed using this selection criterion and successfully released for cultivation in drought-prone target environments. The process can be made more efficient and rapid through marker-assisted breeding, a well-known fast-track approach in crop improvement. QTLs have been identified for grain yield under drought with large effects against drought-susceptible varieties. Most of the identified QTLs show large QTL × environment or QTL × genetic background interactions. The development of mapping populations in the background of popular high-yielding varieties, screening across environments, including the target environments, and the identification of QTLs with a consistent effect across environments can be a suitable alternative marker-assisted breeding strategy. An IR74371-46-1-1 × Sabitri backcross inbred line population was screened for reproductive-stage drought stress at the International Rice Research Institute, Philippines, and Regional Agricultural Research Station, Nepalgunj, Nepal, in the dry and wet seasons of 2011, respectively. A bulk segregant analysis approach was used to identify markers associated with high grain yield under drought.

Results

A QTL, qDTY12.1, significantly associated with grain yield under reproductive-stage drought stress was identified on chromosome 12 with a consistent effect in two environments: IRRI, Philippines, and RARS, Nepalgunj, Nepal. This QTL explained phenotypic variance of 23.8% and contributed an additive effect of 45.3% for grain yield under drought. The positive QTL allele for qDTY12.1 was contributed by tolerant parent IR74371-46-1-1.

Conclusions

In this study, qDTY12.1 showed a consistent effect across environments for high grain yield under lowland reproductive-stage drought stress in the background of popular high-yielding but drought-susceptible recipient variety Sabitri. qDTY12.1 was also reported previously [Crop Sci 47:507–516, 2007] to increase grain yield under upland reproductive-stage drought stress situations. qDTY12.1 is the only QTL reported so far in rice to have shown a large effect against multiple recipient genetic backgrounds as well as under highly diverse upland and lowland rice ecosystems. qDTY12.1 can be successfully introgressed to improve grain yield under drought of popular high-yielding but drought-susceptible lowland as well as upland adapted varieties following marker-assisted breeding.

Keywords:
Drought; Grain yield; Rice; QTL