The self-incompatibility locus (S) and quantitative trait loci for self-pollination and seed dormancy in sunflower

Theor Appl Genet. 2005 Aug;111(4):619-29. doi: 10.1007/s00122-005-1934-7. Epub 2005 Jul 21.


Wild populations of common sunflower (Helianthus annuus L.) are self-incompatible and have deep seed dormancy, whereas modern cultivars, inbreds, and hybrids are self-compatible and partially-to-strongly self-pollinated, and have shallow seed dormancy. Self-pollination (SP) and seed dormancy are genetically complex traits, the number of self-compatibility (S) loci has been disputed, and none of the putative S loci have been genetically mapped in sunflower. We genetically mapped quantitative trait loci (QTL) for self-incompatibility (SI), SP, and seed dormancy in a backcross population produced from a cross between an elite, self-pollinated, nondormant inbred line (NMS373) and a wild, self-incompatible, dormant population (ANN1811). A population consisting of 212 BC(1) progeny was subsequently produced by backcrossing a single hybrid individual to NMS373. BC(1) progeny produced 0-838 seeds per primary capitula when naturally selfed and 0-518 seeds per secondary capitula when manually selfed and segregated for a single S locus. The S locus mapped to linkage group 17 and was tightly linked to a cluster of previously identified QTL for several domestication and postdomestication traits. Two synergistically interacting QTL were identified for SP among self-compatible (ss) BC(1) progeny (R(2)=34.6%). NMS373 homozygotes produced 271.5 more seeds per secondary capitulum than heterozygotes. Germination percentages of seeds after-ripened for 4 weeks ranged from 0% to 100% among self-compatible BC(1)S(1) families. Three QTL for seed dormancy were identified (R(2)=38.3%). QTL effects were in the predicted direction (wild alleles decreased self-pollination and seed germination). The present analysis differentiated between loci governing SI and SP and identified DNA markers for bypassing SI and seed dormancy in elite x wild crosses through marker-assisted selection.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Chromosome Mapping
  • Crosses, Genetic
  • Helianthus / genetics*
  • Inbreeding*
  • Quantitative Trait Loci*
  • Seeds / genetics*
  • Seeds / physiology