Mastrodomenico, A.T.; Hendrix, C.C.; Below, F.E. Nitrogen Use Efficiency and the Genetic Variation of Maize Expired Plant Variety Protection Germplasm. Agriculture2018, 8, 3.
Mastrodomenico, A.T.; Hendrix, C.C.; Below, F.E. Nitrogen Use Efficiency and the Genetic Variation of Maize Expired Plant Variety Protection Germplasm. Agriculture 2018, 8, 3.
Nitrogen use efficiency (NUE) in maize (Zea mays L.) is an important trait to maximize yield with minimal input of nitrogen (N) fertilizer. Expired Plant Variety Protection (ex-PVP) Act-certified germplasm may be an important genetic resource for public breeding sectors. The objectives of this research were to evaluate the genetic variation of N-use traits and to characterize maize ex-PVP inbreds adapted to the U.S. Corn Belt for NUE performance. Eighty-nine ex-PVP inbreds [36 stiff stalk synthetic (SSS), and 53 non-stiff stalk synthetic (NSSS)] were genotyped using 26,769 single-nucleotide polymorphisms, then 263 single-cross maize hybrids derived from these inbreds were grown in eight environments from 2011 to 2015 at two N fertilizer rates (0 and 252 kg N ha−1) and three replications. Genetic utilization and the yield response to N fertilizer were stable across environments and were highly correlated with yield under low and high N conditions, respectively. Cluster analysis identified inbreds with desirable NUE performance. However, only one inbred (PHK56) was ranked in the top 10% for yield under both N-stress and high N conditions. Broad-sense heritability across 12 different N-use traits ranged from 0.11 to 0.77, but was not associated with breeding value accuracy. Nitrogen-stress tolerance was negatively correlated with the yield increase from N fertilizer.
Expired Plant Variety Protection (ex-PVP); maize; nitrogen stress; Nitrogen Use Efficiency (NUE); U.S. Corn Belt Germplasm
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