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This article in AJ

  1. Vol. 68 No. 3, p. 511-513
     
    Received: June 20, 1975


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doi:10.2134/agronj1976.00021962006800030018x

Mitochondrial Efficiency of Individual Alfalfa Plants as Related to Forage Yield1

  1. A. A. Schneiter,
  2. R. G. McDaniel,
  3. A. K. Dobrenz and
  4. M. H. Schonhorst2

Abstract

Abstract

The mitochondrial efficiency (ADP:0 ratio) of 5-day-old alfalfa (Medicago sativa L.) seedlings has been positively correlated to forage yields of similar lines grown in the field. The present technique used for selection of genotypes having high mitochondrial efficiency in alfalfa is limited because alfalfa is a very heterogenous crop and an evaluation of individual genotypes cannot be made using the large number of seedlings required for adequate sample. Objectives of this study were to 1. devise a technique for determination of ADP:0 ratio on an individual plant basis and 2. determine if a relationship existed between forage yields of individual genotypes and their mitochondrial efficiency.

ADP:O ratios were obtained on an individual plant basis, by the extraction of mitochondria from etiolated stem + petiole tissue. A significant positive correlation was found between ADP:O ratios and field forage production of identical genotypes. No correlation was found between etiolated regrowth and ADP:O ratios of comparable genotypes.

The technique for the selection of individual genotypes having high yield potential, by the use of mitochondrial efficiency evaluations, could serve as a valuable screening tool for plant breeders. This technique would allow both an increase in the magnitude of the population evaluated and a more efficient utilization of field research time and effort by the prior elimination of genotypes having low yield potential.

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