Genetic Architecture of Charcoal Rot (Macrophomina phaseolina) Resistance in Soybean Revealed Using a Diverse Panel

Coser, Sara
Singh, Asheesh
Chowda Reddy, R. V.
Zhang, Jiaoping
Mueller, Daren
Mengistu, Alemu
Wise, Kiersten
Allen, Tom
Singh, Arti
Singh, Asheesh
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Plant Pathology and MicrobiologyAgronomy

Charcoal rot (CR) disease caused by Macrophomina phaseolina is responsible for significant yield losses in soybean production. Among the methods available for controlling this disease, breeding for resistance is the most promising. Progress in breeding efforts has been slow due to the insufficient information available on the genetic mechanisms related to resistance. Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) enable unraveling the genetic architecture of resistance and identification of causal genes. The aims of this study were to identify new sources of resistance to CR in a collection of 459 diverse plant introductions from the USDA Soybean Germplasm Core Collection using field and greenhouse screenings, and to conduct GWAS to identify candidate genes and associated molecular markers. New sources for CR resistance were identified from both field and greenhouse screening from maturity groups I, II, and III. Five significant single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) and putative candidate genes related to abiotic and biotic stress responses are reported from the field screening; while greenhouse screening revealed eight loci associated with eight candidate gene families, all associated with functions controlling plant defense response. No overlap of markers or genes was observed between field and greenhouse screenings suggesting a complex molecular mechanism underlying resistance to CR in soybean with varied response to different environments; but our findings provide useful information for advancing breeding for CR resistance as well as the genetic mechanism of resistance.


This article is published as Coser, Sara M., R. V. Chowda Reddy, Jiaoping Zhang, Daren S. Mueller, Alemu Mengistu, Kiersten A. Wise, Tom W. Allen, Arti Singh, and Asheesh K. Singh. "Genetic architecture of Charcoal Rot (Macrophomina phaseolina) Resistance in Soybean revealed using a diverse panel." Frontiers in Plant Science 8 (2017): 1626. doi: 10.3389/fpls.2017.01626. Posted with permission.