qhkw5-3, a major QTL for kernel weight in maize, was mapped to an interval of 125.3 kb between the InDel markers InYM20 and InYM36, and the candidate genes were analysed.



Yield, of which kernel weight is a major component, is the primary trait of interest in maize breeding programmes. In our previous study, a major QTL (named qhkw5-3), which controls hundred-kernel weight, was identified and mapped to the interval between simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers SYM033 and SYM108 on chromosome 5, using an F2:3 population derived from a cross between the maize inbred line Zheng58 and the single-segment substitution line Z22. In order to fine map qhkw5-3, a larger BC1F1 segregating population of 14,759 seeds, derived from a (Z22 × Zheng58) × Z22 cross, was screened using the SSR markers SYM036 and SYM119. Forty genotypes with donor chromosomal fragments of different lengths were obtained. Progeny testing results indicated that qhkw5-3 was mapped to an interval of 442.6 kb between the SSR markers SYM077 and SYM084. Overlap mapping results, based on seven homozygous recombinant lines, showed that qhkw5-3 was narrowed down to an interval of 125.3 kb between the InDel markers InYM20 and InYM36. Within this interval, six candidate genes were analysed using qRT-PCR. The results of this study lay the foundations for cloning and functional analysis of qhkw5-3 and will contribute to advancing our knowledge of the genetic basis of yield traits in maize.


See https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s00122-019-03372-7