Increased Resistance to Ustilago zeae and Fusarium verticilliodes in Maize Inbred Lines Bred for Fusarium graminearum Resistance.

Reid, L.M., Zhu, X., Parker, A.J., and Yan, W. (2009). "Increased Resistance to Ustilago zeae and Fusarium verticilliodes in Maize Inbred Lines Bred for Fusarium graminearum Resistance.", Euphytica, 165(3), pp. 567-578. doi : 10.1007/s10681-008-9782-6  Access to full text

Abstract

Preliminary field observations in our maize breeding nurseries indicated that breeding for improved resistance to gibberella ear rot (Fusarium graminearum) in maize may indirectly select for resistance to another ear disease, common smut (Ustilago zeae). To investigate this, we compared the disease severity ratings obtained on 189 maize inbreds, eight of which included our inbreds developed with selection for gibberella ear rot resistance after field inoculation and breeding for 8-10 years. No correlation was found between disease severities for the 189 inbreds but the eight gibberella-resistant lines were consistently more resistant to smut. To further examine this relationship and to determine if these eight inbreds would be useful for developing inbreds with either common smut or fusarium ear rot (F. verticilliodes) resistance, we conducted a Griffing’s diallel analysis on six inbreds of maize, four with high levels of gibberella ear rot resistance representing all of the pedigree groups in our eight gibberella lines, and two with very low levels. Our most gibberella ear rot resistant inbreds, CO433 and CO441, had the lowest disease ratings for all three diseases, the consistently largest general combining ability effects and several significant specific combining ability effects. It was concluded that some inbreds bred specifically for gibberella ear rot would also be useful in breeding for resistance to common smut and fusarium ear rot.

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