DNA marker assisted breeding in interspecific crosses to improve canola (Brassica napus L.)

Christopher Schelfhout

    Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis

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    [Truncated abstract] In order to expand the gene pool of canola-quality rapeseed (Brassica napus) reciprocal interspecific crosses were made between B. napus cv. Mystic and near canola-quality B. juncea breeding line JN29. F1 progeny from these crosses were used to make backcrosses to both parents in all possible combinations and directions, and were selfed to form F2-derived lines. The highest frequencies of viable F2 and BC1 progeny were obtained when B. napus was the maternal parent of the interspecific hybrid. BC1 and F2 progeny (and subsequent generations) were grown under field conditions to identify agronomic improvements over the parents. Transgressive segregation was observed in F2 and BC1 and in subsequent generations for agronomic traits (seed yield under high or low rainfall conditions, plant biomass, harvest index, height, branching and days to anthesis) and seed quality traits (oil, protein, glucosinolates, oleic acid). The majority of progeny conformed to B. napus morphology, and a minority segregated to B. juncea morphology in subsequent generations. Some of the B. juncea morphotypes had lower glucosinolates and higher oleic acid than the parent JN29, with no detectable erucic acid, and thereby conformed to canola quality. Methods were developed for tracing B-genome in interspecific progeny. A repetitive DNA sequence pBNBH35 from B. nigra (genome BB, 2n = 16) was used to identify B-genome chromosomes and introgressions in interspecific progeny. Specific primers were designed for pBNBH35 in order to amplify the repetitive sequence by PCR. A cloned sub-fragment of 329 bp was confirmed by sequencing as part of pBNBH35. PCR and hybridisation techniques were used on an array of Brassica species to confirm that the pBNBH35 subfragment was Brassica B-genome specific. Fluorescence in situ hybridisation (FISH) in B nigra, B. juncea (AABB, 2n=36) and B. napus (AACC, 2n=38) showed that the pBNBH35 sub-fragment was present on all eight Brassica Bgenome chromosomes and absent from A- and C-genome chromosomes. The pBNBH35 repeat was localised to the centromeric region of each B-genome chromosome. FISH clearly distinguished the B-genome chromosomes from the A-genome chromosomes in the amphidiploid species B. juncea. This is the first known report of a B-genome repetitive marker that is present on all Brassica Bgenome chromosomes. ... The results suggest that novel B. napus genotypes have been generated containing introgressions of B-genome chromatin from B. juncea chromosomes. B. juncea morphology occurred in interspecific progeny with a chromosome complement similar to B. napus (2n = 38) and without the entire Bgenome present. It also is highly likely that recombination has occurred between the A-genome of the two Brassica species. This research has demonstrated that the secondary gene pool of B. napus may be accessed by selfing interspecific hybrids, and without sacrificing canola quality, if the B. juncea parent is near canola-quality. Interspecific progeny may be screened to enhance the proportion with B-genome positive signals. Some progeny with B. junceatype morphology had improved seed quality over the JN29 parent.
    Original languageEnglish
    QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
    Publication statusUnpublished - 2007


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