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Susan K. Brown

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Susan K. Brown

Abstract

Significant differences in firmness were detected when the Instron Universal Testing Machine was used to test fruit firmness in a group of 13 sour cherry (Prunus cerasus L.) cultivars and selections. Deformation testing of intact fruit resulted in the establishment of seven statistically distinct firmness groups. Selections and cultivars that were firmer than ‘Montmorency’ were identified. Differences in skin strength, as determined by an Instron puncture test, were not as distinct. At harvest, firmness was not correlated with soluble solids content, fruit removal force or fruit weight, indicating the inadequacy of any of these parameters alone as an index of fruit maturity. Deformation testing with the Instron can be used to accurately assess whole fruit firmness in sour cherry breeding programs. Modification of the puncture test would be required to increase the precision in detecting differences in skin strength.

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Frank Cheng, Norman Weeden, and Susan Brown

The ability to pre-screen apple populations for fruit color at an early seedling stage would be advantageous. In progeny of the cross `Rome Beauty' × `White Angel' red/yellow color variation was found to be highly correlated with the genotype at Idh-2, an isozyme locus that was heterozygous in both parents. We postulate that the red/yellow color variation was produced by a single gene linked to I&-2 and also heterozygous in both parents. This population was also screened with over 400 primers to detect randomly amplified polymorphic (RAPD) markers for fruit color. DNA extraction procedures were developed for bark, and DNA was extracted from bark samples and leaves. Red and yellow fruited individuals were examined in bulk. Several markers have been found that are linked to red color. A high density map is being constructed in this region. These markers are being examined in other crosses segregating for fruit color. The application of these markers will be discussed in relation to the inheritance and manipulation of fruit color.

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Kenji Sakurai, Susan K. Brown, and Norman Weeden

The S-alleles of 55 apple (Malus ×domestica Borkh.) cultivars and selections were determined using an allele-specific polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification system for 11 different S-alleles (S2, S3, S4, S5, S7, S9, S24, S26, S27, Sd, Sf). Four cultivars had S-alleles different than those predicted by their parentage. Three commercial cultivars of unknown pedigrees had S-genotypes that suggested `Delicious' and `Golden Delicious' were the parents. S-genotyping results supported controlled pollination test results. The genotypes of the five triploid cultivars examined were consistent with the unreduced gamete being contributed by the female parent. Although a large number of S-genotypes is available in apple, artificial selection or repeated use of the same cultivars as parents appears to have significantly restricted the number of compatibility groups associated with commercial clones. In controlled reciprocal crosses between two cultivars of known S-genotypes, the segregation of S-genotypes and S-alleles was 1:1:1:1, the ratio expected for random pairing of alleles.

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Patrick J. Conner, Susan K. Brown, and Norman F. Weeden

Two half-sib populations (cross 1 = `Wijcik McIntosh' (WM) × NY 75441-67, and cross 2 = WM × NY 75441-58) were used to create maps for the parents and to find RAPD or isozyme markers for qualitative and quantitative traits. WM is a sport of `McIntosh' and is heterozygous for the dominant columnar (Co) gene for reduced branching. WM is of great interest in breeding because of the tremendous effect of the Co gene on many aspects of plant form. NY 75441-67 and NY 75441-58 are advanced selections with commercial fruit quality and resistance to scab (Vf resistance from M. floribunda). Traits examined included both tree (plant height, stem diameter, suckering, branching habit, leaf break, burr knot production) and fruit (size, shape, color, stem length, seed number) characters and fruit quality traits (pH, acid content, Brix). The conservation of RAPD markers in these closely related crosses will be examined and the usefulness of molecular markers to preselect for components of plant form and fruit quality will be discussed. Molecular markers will increase the efficiency of the apple breeding program by aiding the understanding and manipulation of complex genetic traits.

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Patrick J. Conner, Susan K. Brown, and Norman F. Weeden

Molecular markers (isozyme and DNA) have been used to map apple and have helped to elucidate the inheritance of some morphological traits. In this project random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) and isozyme markers were used to create maps for `Wijcik McIntosh, a columnar (reduced branching) sport of `McIntosh' and NY 75441-67, an advanced selection from the multiple disease resistance breeding program. NY 75441-67 is resistant to scab source of resistance from M. floribunda) and resistant to cedar apple rust. `Wijcik McIntosh' is being used in the breeding program as a source of the dominant gene, Co, for reduced branching, but there is also interest in this genotype because of the tremendous variation in plant form observed in progenies segregating for columnar habit. Some of these form variants may be of greater commercial interest than the parental material. Morphological traits examined in this progeny included plant height, stem diameter, suckering, branching habit, spur production, and internode length. The usefulness of molecular markers to pre-select for components of plant form is being examined. Molecular markers promise to aid our understanding and manipulation of quantitative morphological traits.

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Kenji Sakurai, Susan K. Brown, and Norman F. Weeden

The S alleles of 15 Japanese apple cultivars were determined by using the allele-specific polymerase chain reaction amplification and restriction enzyme digestion system developed by Janssens et al. (1995). Both S alleles were identified in eight diploid cultivars, two S alleles in three triploid cultivars, and one S allele in the remaining four diploid cultivars. Two cultivars had S alleles different than those predicted by their parentage, and in one comparison of a cultivar with its sport, an identity problem was discovered. The technique helped to indicate the parent contributing the unreduced gamete in triploids.

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Minou Hemmat, Norman F. Weeden, and Susan K. Brown

Apple scab, Venturia inaequalis (Cke.) Wint., is one of the most damaging diseases of apples. Although fungicide sprays have been used to control the disease, genetic resistance in existing commercially important varieties would be desirable. Identification of molecular marker(s) would be helpful in devising biotechnological approaches to control the disease. We used bulk segregant analysis to identify RAPD markers that cosegregate or display a tight linkage with Vf gene in Prima × Spartan cross. Using this approach, we are saturating the region around the scab resistance gene for the purpose of bracketing the locus. We have identified several markers associated with the Vf locus. The closest markers have been isolated and sequenced to be used as SCARs. The relationship and distances of the markers with the Vf locus and other previously reported markers will be discussed.

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Minou Hemmat, Susan K. Brown, and Norman F. Weeden

The genetic basis of resistance to apple scab [Venturia inaequalis (Cke.) Wint.] in the Russian apple seedling R12740-7A (Malus Mill. sp.) was investigated. Segregation ratios obtained in crosses with susceptible cultivars suggested that at least two genes were involved, and three foliar resistance reactions (chlorotic, stellate necrotic, and pit type) were observed after inoculation. DNA markers were identified for both the stellate necrotic (Vr) and pit type (no locus designation, Vx suggested) resistance phenotypes. Comparison of resistance phenotypes with marker segregation demonstrated that only two major dominant genes were present in R12740-7A, one producing the stellate necrotic lesion and the other the pit-type lesion. The chlorotic lesion could be attributed to either unclear expression of the resistance phenotype or to susceptible genotypes not contracting the disease. These markers along with a previously published marker for Vf were used to analyze inheritance of resistance in a Vr × Vf cross in advanced breeding material. The markers identified successfully all susceptible progeny, as well as apparent escapes and individuals possessing both Vf and Vr. Thus, the markers should be useful in future screening of segregating progeny and in the pyramiding of scab resistance genes in new cultivars.

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Patrick J. Conner, Susan K. Brown, and Norman F. Weeden

Genetic linkage maps were created for three apple (Malus ×domestica Borkh.) cultivars using data from two progenies (`Wijcik McIntosh' xNY 75441-67 and `Wijcik McIntosh' xNY 75441-58). The maps consist primarily of randomly amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) markers, but also contain six isozyme loci and four morphological markers (Rf, fruit skin color; Vf, scab resistance; Co, columnar growth habit; Ma, malic acid). Maps were constructed using a double pseudotestcross mapping format and JoinMap mapping software. An integrated `Wijcik McIntosh' map was produced by combining marker data from both progenies into a single linkage map. Homologous linkage groups from paternal maps were paired with their counterparts in the `Wijcik McIntosh' map using locus bridges composed of markers heterozygous in both parents of a progeny. The `Wijcik McIntosh' map consists of 238 markers arranged in 19 linkage groups spanning 1206 cM. The NY 75441-67 map contains 110 markers in 16 linkage groups and the NY 75441-58 map consists of 183 markers in 18 linkage groups. The average distance between markers in the maps was ≈5.0 cM.