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Genetic and Agronomic Evaluation of wp-m in Soybean


This article in CS

  1. Vol. 40 No. 2, p. 346-351
    Received: May 10, 1999

    * Corresponding author(s): cnickell@uiuc.edu
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  1. J. M. Hegstada,
  2. L. O. Vodkina and
  3. C. D. Nickell *a
  1.  aUniv. of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Dep. of Crop Sciences, 1102 S. Goodwin, Urbana, IL 61801 USA


Transposable element systems have been proposed to explain instability in floral pigmentation of several plant species, including soybean [Glycine max (L.) Merr.]. Soybean lines with chimeric (purple and pink sectored) flowers are hypothesized to contain wp-m, an active transposable element that is able to excise from the wp locus during morphological development. The objectives of this research were (i) to determine the inheritance of the chimeric flower phenotype when crossed to stable pink or purple flowered revertant lines and (ii) to determine the effect of wp on agronomic traits in stable flowered lines derived from wp-m Chimeric flowers crossed to pink flowered revertant (wp*) lines produced four F2 populations with unusual segregation ratios of 52 pink, three purple, and two chimeric flowered plants. Crossing chimeric flowers to revertant purple flowered (Wp*) lines resulted in F2 populations that did not have the chimeric flower phenotype evident. In the agronomic evaluations, stable wp* lines were later in maturity and averaged 4 g kg−1 higher in protein content and 3 g kg−1 lower in oil content than Wp* lines. The data suggest wp acts in a pleiotropic manner to influence protein synthesis, as purple flowered revertant lines from a pink flower source had lower protein content than sister lines with wp*. Pink flowered lines derived from a purple flower source had higher levels of protein than sister lines with Wp*. The influence of wp on the anthocyanin pathway, plant morphology, and protein accumulation is a unique phenomenon that has not been reported in other plant species.

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