Linkage mapping and identification of QTL affecting deoxynivalenol (DON) content (Fusarium resistance) in oats (Avena sativa L.).
Mycotoxins caused by Fusarium spp. is a major concern on food and feed safety in oats, although Fusarium head blight (FHB) is often less apparent than in other small grain cereals. Breeding resistant cultivars is an economic and environment-friendly way to reduce toxin content, either by the identification of resistance QTL or phenotypic evaluation. Both are little explored in oats. A recombinant-inbred line population, Hurdal × Z595-7 (HZ595, with 184 lines), was used for QTL mapping and was phenotyped for 3 years. Spawn inoculation was applied and deoxynivalenol (DON) content, FHB severity, days to heading and maturity (DH and DM), and plant height (PH) were measured. The population was genotyped with DArTs, AFLPs, SSRs and selected SNPs, and a linkage map of 1,132 cM was constructed, covering all 21 oat chromosomes. A QTL for DON on chromosome 17A/7C, tentatively designated as Qdon.umb-17A/7C, was detected in all experiments using composite interval mapping, with phenotypic effects of 12.2–26.6 %. In addition, QTL for DON were also found on chromosomes 5C, 9D, 13A, 14D and unknown_3, while a QTL for FHB was found on 11A. Several of the DON/FHB QTL coincided with those for DH, DM and/or PH. A half-sib population of HZ595, Hurdal × Z615-4 (HZ615, with 91 lines), was phenotyped in 2011 for validation of QTL found in HZ595, and Qdon.umb-17A/7C was again localized with a phenotypic effect of 12.4 %. Three SNPs closely linked to Qdon.umb-17A/7C were identified in both populations, and one each for QTL on 5C, 11A and 13A were identified in HZ595. These SNPs, together with those yet to be identified, could be useful in marker-assisted selection to pyramiding resistance QTL.