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Spatial statistical analysis and selection of genotypes in plant breeding

Spatial statistical analysis and selection of genotypes in plant breeding

Pesquisa Agropecuaria Brasileira 40(2): 107-114

ISSN/ISBN: 0100-204X

The objective of this study was to evaluate the efficiency of spatial statistical analysis in the selection of genotypes in a plant breeding program and, particularly, to demonstrate the benefits of the approach when experimental observations are not spatially independent. The basic material of this study was a yield trial of soybean lines, with five check varieties (of fixed effect) and 110 test lines (of random effects), in an augmented block design. The spatial analysis used a random field linear model (RFML), with a covariance function estimated from the residuals of the analysis considering independent errors. Results showed a residual autocorrelation of significant magnitude and extension (range), which allowed a better discrimination among genotypes (increase of the power of statistical tests, reduction in the standard errors of estimates and predictors, and a greater amplitude of predictor values) when the spatial analysis was applied. Furthermore, the spatial analysis led to a different ranking of the genetic materials, in comparison with the non-spatial analysis, and a selection less influenced by local variation effects was obtained.

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