Genetic diversity in tropical maize inbred lines: heterotic group assignment and hybrid performance determined by RFLP markers

Benchimol, L.L.; Souza Junior, C.L. de; Garcia, A.A.F.; Kono, P.M.S.; Mangolin, C.A.; Barbosa, A.M.M.; Coelho, A.S.G.; Souza, A.P. de

Plant Breeding 119(6): 491-496


ISSN/ISBN: 0179-9541
DOI: 10.1046/j.1439-0523.2000.00539.x
Accession: 003455026

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Tropical maize inbred lines, eight derived from a Thai synthetic population (BR-105) and 10 from a Brazilian composite population (BR-106), were assayed for restriction fragment length polymorphisms with 185 clone-enzyme combinations. The aim of this study was to investigate genetic distances among tropical maize material and their relationship to heterotic group allocation and hybrid performance. Genetic distances (GDs) were on average greater for BR-105 x BR-106 lines (0.77) than for BR-106 x BR-106 (0.71) and for BR-105 x BR-105 (0.69) lines. Cluster analysis resulted in a clear separation of BR-105 and BR-106 populations and was according to pedigree information. Correlations of parental GDs with single crosses and their heterosis for grain yield were high for line crosses from the same heterotic group and low for line combinations from different heterotic groups. Our results suggest that RFLP-based GDs are efficient and reliable to assess and allocate genotypes from tropical maize populations into heterotic groups. However, RFLP-based GDs are not suitable for predicting the performance of line crosses from genetically different heterotic groups.