A New Advanced Backcross Tomato Population Enables High Resolution Leaf QTL Mapping and Gene Identification

G3 (Bethesda). 2016 Oct 13;6(10):3169-3184. doi: 10.1534/g3.116.030536.


Quantitative Trait Loci (QTL) mapping is a powerful technique for dissecting the genetic basis of traits and species differences. Established tomato mapping populations between domesticated tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) and its more distant interfertile relatives typically follow a near isogenic line (NIL) design, such as the S. pennellii Introgression Line (IL) population, with a single wild introgression per line in an otherwise domesticated genetic background. Here, we report on a new advanced backcross QTL mapping resource for tomato, derived from a cross between the M82 tomato cultivar and S. pennellii This so-called Backcrossed Inbred Line (BIL) population is comprised of a mix of BC2 and BC3 lines, with domesticated tomato as the recurrent parent. The BIL population is complementary to the existing S. pennellii IL population, with which it shares parents. Using the BILs, we mapped traits for leaf complexity, leaflet shape, and flowering time. We demonstrate the utility of the BILs for fine-mapping QTL, particularly QTL initially mapped in the ILs, by fine-mapping several QTL to single or few candidate genes. Moreover, we confirm the value of a backcrossed population with multiple introgressions per line, such as the BILs, for epistatic QTL mapping. Our work was further enabled by the development of our own statistical inference and visualization tools, namely a heterogeneous hidden Markov model for genotyping the lines, and by using state-of-the-art sparse regression techniques for QTL mapping.

Keywords: epistatic QTL; fine-mapping QTL; heterogeneous Hidden Markov Model; regularized regression; variable selection.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Chromosome Mapping*
  • Crosses, Genetic*
  • Epistasis, Genetic
  • Genes, Plant*
  • Genetic Association Studies* / methods
  • Genotype
  • Inbreeding
  • Markov Chains
  • Models, Genetic
  • Phenotype
  • Plant Leaves / genetics*
  • Polymorphism, Genetic
  • Quantitative Trait Loci*
  • Quantitative Trait, Heritable
  • Solanum lycopersicum / genetics*