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Broadening genetic diversity in canola (Brassica napus) germplasm using the B. oleracea var. alboglabra C-genome Open Access


Other title
Genetic diversity
Days to flowering
B. oleracea var. alboglabra
Interspecific cross
Test hybrid
Microsatellite marker
Brassica napus
Canola quality
Type of item
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Bennett, Rick A
Supervisor and department
Rahman, Habibur (Agricultural, Food, and Nutritional Science)
Examining committee member and department
Spaner, Dean (Agricultural, Food, and Nutritional Science)
Rahman, Habibur (Agricultural, Food, and Nutritional Science)
Yeh, Francis (Renewable Resources)
Yang, Rong-Cai (Agricultural, Food, and Nutritional Science)
McVetty, Peter (University of Manitoba, Department of Plant Science)
Department of Agricultural, Food, and Nutritional Science
Plant Science
Date accepted
Graduation date
Doctor of Philosophy
Degree level
Genetic diversity in spring canola (Brassica napus L., AACC genome, 2n=38) cultivars is narrow. Limited effort has been made to utilize genetic diversity from the diploid species B. oleracea (CC genome, 2n=18), apparently due to the difficulty of producing B. napus × B. oleracea hybrids as well as lack of canola quality traits in seeds of this species. This Ph.D. research investigates the potential of genetic diversity of the C-genome of B. oleracea for the improvement of spring oilseed B. napus. Inbred lines were developed from F1 and BC1 plants of canola B. napus × B. oleracea var. alboglabra interspecific crosses through pedigree breeding. These populations were assessed for seed quality, effectiveness of selection based on morphological traits, genetic diversity using simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers, and ploidy levels using flow cytometry and cytological analysis of meiotic chromosomes. Heterotic potential of the F8 lines were evaluated, and compared with two populations derived from winter × spring and spring × spring B. napus crosses. In addition, an early flowering F5 line was used to generate a doubled haploid population for phenotypic and genetic analysis of the early flowering allele(s) of B. oleracea introgressed into B. napus. Erucic acid content in the B. napus × B. oleracea interspecific plants depended on genotype at the C-genome locus (C+C+, C+C0, C0C0) as well as dosage effect of the zero-erucic allele from B. napus A-genome; and F2 segregation deviated significantly from the 3:1 ratio based on disomic segregation of C-genome erucic acid alleles. Low glucosinolate plants were achieved from a relatively small segregating population, due to simpler segregation of high and low glucosinolate alleles in C-genome only. Surprisingly, all inbred lines resulting from self-pollination of F2 and BC1 plants stabilized to B. napus type – none were found to have B. oleracea ploidy. On a population basis, hybrid yield of the inbred lines of B. napus × B. oleracea and winter × spring crosses did not deviate significantly from the tester parent Hi-Q; however, a number of lines displayed significant mid- and high-parent heterosis. No correlation was found between genetic distance of the inbred lines from Hi-Q and mid- or high-parent heterosis for seed yield. Two publicly available SSR markers, sR10417 and Ol13-G05, previously mapped to the B. napus chromosome N12, were found to be associated with the early flowering allele of B. oleracea introgressed into B. napus. In addition, two SSR markers, SSR-617 and SSR-129, were strongly associated with a QTL for high glucosinolate content originating from the C-genome of B. oleracea, presumably residing on the B. napus chromosome N19. The findings from this Ph.D. research project suggested that it is feasible to introgress genetic diversity from the C-genome of B. oleracea into a canola quality and euploid B. napus background; and this diversity has great potential for improving yields of hybrid canola, as well as introducing alleles for improvement of specific traits such as earliness of flowering.
This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for the purpose of private, scholarly or scientific research. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.
Citation for previous publication
Bennett RA, Séguin-Swartz G, Rahman H (2012) Broadening genetic diversity in canola (Brassica napus L.) using the C-genome species B. oleracea. Crop Sci 52:2030-2039Bennett RA, Thiagarajah MR, Séguin-Swartz G, Rahman H (2011) Broadening genetic diversity in canola: development of double-low recombinant inbred lines from Brassica napus x B. oleracea cross. Proceedings of the 13th International Rapeseed Congress 1:578-580Rahman MH, Bennett RA, Yang RC, Kebede B, Thiagarajah MR (2011) Exploitation of the late flowering species Brassica oleracea L. for the improvement of earliness in B. napus L. - an untraditional approach. Euphytica 177:365-374

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