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Scott D. Haley, Phillip N. Miklas, Lucia Afanador, and James D. Kelly

The objective of this study was to evaluate the degree of RAPD marker variability between and within commercially productive market classes representative of the Andean and Middle American gene pools of common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.). Six sets of near-isogenic lines were screened with oligonucleotide primers in the polymerase chain reaction-based RAPD assay. Simultaneous analyses with at least three sets of lines enabled us to score RAPD markers between the two major gene pools, races within the same gene pool, and different genotypes of the same race (within race). A “three-tiered” pattern of polymorphism was observed: between gene pools> between races> within races. The overall level of polymorphism between the Andean and Middle American gene pools was 83.4%. The overall level of polymorphism between races within the same gene pool was similar for Andean races (60.4%) and Middle American races (61.7%). The level of polymorphism between related commercial navy bean lines was 39.2% and between related commercial snap bean lines was 53.6 %. The inherent simplicity and efficiency of RAPD analyses, coupled with the number of polymorphisms detectable between related commercial genotypes, should facilitate the construction of RAPD-based genetic linkage maps in the context of populations representative of most bean breeding programs.

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Gerardine Mukeshimana, Amy L. Lasley, Wayne H. Loescher, and James D. Kelly

Drought is an important abiotic stress that limits common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris) productivity. The objective of this study was to determine shoot traits that are associated with drought tolerance in common bean seedlings. Ten common bean genotypes consisting mainly of cultivars and breeding lines from the Mesoamerican race of the Middle American gene pool were first evaluated in the greenhouse. Genotypes were grown in a shallow soil profile to limit root growth and assess shoot phenotypes under stress. Water stress was imposed by withholding watering for 24 days after planting. Traits evaluated included wilting, unifoliate senescence, stem greenness, and recovery from drought. Biomass and number of pods/plant produced after drought recovery were evaluated to quantify the effect of early drought stress on bean growth and reproduction. A second group of 94 common bean genotypes from the Bean Coordinated Agricultural Project (BeanCAP) were evaluated using the same protocol to determine the genetic variability for the same traits in a wider range of genotypes. In general, genotypes known to possess drought avoidance in the field conferred by deep rooting traits performed poorly in these conditions suggesting that the assay could be used to identify seedling shoot traits that contribute to drought tolerance. Genotypes from race Mesoamerica showed the greatest range in wilting. Genotypes that showed a slow rate of wilting maintained a green stem and had a higher recovery rate after watering. Importantly, these genotypes demonstrated a smaller reduction in biomass and pod number under stress compared with non-stress treatments. A few genotypes recovered completely despite expressing severe wilting, whereas the majority of genotypes with high wilting rates did not recover. Among the BeanCAP materials, genotypes bred in the rainfed midwestern United States showed overall better recovery than those bred under the irrigated production system used in the western United States. Because recovery from drought is a prerequisite to plant regrowth, biomass, and pod production after drought stress, factors that contribute to recovery were studied. Stem greenness was highly positively correlated to the recovery, whereas wilting was negatively correlated to the recovery. In a regression analysis, stem greenness and slow wilting were found to be important contributors to the variability of recovery. In addition, photosynthetic rate and stomatal conductance (g S) explained variation in wilting and stem greenness. These results suggest that wilting and stem greenness might be useful traits to screen for drought tolerance in seedlings of common bean.

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Kimberly J. Walters, George L. Hosfield, Mark A. Uebersax, and James D. Kelly

Three populations of navy bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.), consisting of recombinant inbred lines, were grown at two locations for 2 years and were used to study canning quality. The traits measured included visual appeal (VIS), texture (TXT), and washed drained mass (WDM). Genotype mean squares were significant for all three traits across populations, although location and year mean squares were higher. We found a positive correlation (r = 0.19 to 0.66) between VIS and TXT and a negative correlation (r = -0.26 to -0.66) between VIS and WDM and between TXT and WDM (r = -0.53 to -0.83) in all three populations. Heritability estimates were calculated for VIS, TXT, and WDM, and these values were moderate to high (0.48 to 0.78). Random amplified polymorphic DNA markers associated with quantitative trait loci (QTL) for the same canning quality traits were identified and studied in each population. Marker-QTL associations were established using the general linear models procedure with significance set at P=0.05. Location and population specificity was common among the marker-QTL associations identified. Coefficient of determination (R2) values for groups of markers used in multiple regression analyses ranged from 0.2 to 0.52 for VIS, 0.11 to 0.38 for TXT, and 0.25 to 0.38 for WDM. Markers were identified that were associated with multiple traits and those associations supported correlations between phenotypic traits. MAS would offer no advantage over phenotypic selection for the improvement of negatively associated traits.

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Frank M. Elia, George L. Hosfield, James D. Kelly, and Mark A. Uebersax

A knowledge of the relative proportion of additive and nonadditive genetic variances for complex traits in a population forms a basis for studying trait inheritance and can be used as a tool in plant breeding. A North Carolina Design II mating scheme was used to determine the inheritance of cooking time, protein and tannin content, and water absorption among 16 genotypes of dry bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) representative of the Andean Center of Domestication. Heritability and the degree of dominance for the traits were also calculated to provide guidelines for adopting breeding strategies for cultivar development. Thirty-two progeny resulted from the matings and these were assigned to two sets of 16 progeny each. Variances due to general combining ability (GCA) and specific combining ability (SCA) were significant for the traits. The GCA was larger in all cases. Narrow-sense heritability for protein, tannin, water absorption, and cooking time averaged 0.88, 0.91, 0.77, and 0.90, respectively. Degree of dominance estimates indicted that the traits were governed by genes with partial dominance except, in one case, tannin had a degree of dominance value of zero, indicating no dominance. The phenotypic correlation (-0.82) between water absorption and cooking time justifies using the water absorption trait as an indirect selection method for cooking time. With regard to parent selection in crosses, significant differences between GCA females and GCA males suggested cytoplasmic influences on trait expression. Hence, the way a parent is used in a cross (i.e., as female or male) will offset trait segregation. Using fast-cooking bean cultivars in conjunction with fuel-efficient cooking methods may be the best strategy to conserve fuelwood and help reduce the rate of deforestation in East and Central Africa.

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Maria-Carmela T. Posa-Macalincag, George L. Hosfield, Kenneth F. Grafton, Mark A. Uebersax, and James D. Kelly

Canning quality of dry bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.), of which the degree of splitting (SPLT) and overall appearance (APP) of canned beans are major components, is a complex trait that exhibits quantitative inheritance. The objectives of this study were to identify major genes that affect APP and SPLT in kidney bean, and map the location of these loci to the integrated core map of common bean. The analysis was performed using random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) markers and two populations of kidney bean, consisting of 75 and 73 recombinant inbred lines (RILs), respectively. The two populations—`Montcalm' × `California Dark Red Kidney 82' and `Montcalm' × `California Early Light Red Kidney'—were planted in six year-location combinations in Michigan, Minnesota and North Dakota from 1996 to 1999. Correlations between APP and SPLT were high (0.91 to 0.97). Heritability estimates for APP and SPLT ranged from 0.83 to 0.85 in the two populations. Major genes for these traits were identified on two linkage groups. The first QTL, associated with seven RAPD markers, was putatively mapped to the B8 linkage group of the core bean linkage map. Desirable canning quality appeared to be derived from Montcalm at this locus. The second QTL, associated with four markers, appeared to be derived from the California parents. The second linkage group was not assigned to a linkage group in the core map. Population and environment-specificity were observed for the markers identified.

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George L. Hosfield, James D. Kelly, M.J. Silbernagel, J.R. Stavely, M.W. Adams, M.A. Uebersax, and G.V. Varner