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    Author(s): Steve McKeand; Saul Garcia; Josh Steiger; Jim Grissom; Ross Whetten; Fikret Isik
    Date: 2012
    Source: In: Sniezko, Richard A.; Yanchuk, Alvin D.; Kliejunas, John T.; Palmieri, Katharine M.; Alexander, Janice M.; Frankel, Susan J., tech. coords. Proceedings of the fourth international workshop on the genetics of host-parasite interactions in forestry: Disease and insect resistance in forest trees. Gen. Tech. Rep. PSW-GTR-240. Albany, CA: Pacific Southwest Research Station, Forest Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture. p. 216
    Publication Series: General Technical Report (GTR)
    Station: Pacific Southwest Research Station
    PDF: Download Publication  (124.6 KB)

    Description

    The elite breeding populations of loblolly pine (Pinus taeda L.) in the North Carolina State University Cooperative Tree Improvement Program are intensively managed for short-term genetic gain. Fusiform rust disease, caused by the fungus Cronartium quercuum f. sp. fusiforme, is the most economically important disease in pine plantations across the southeastern United States, causing multi-million dollar annual losses. In order to cull susceptible crosses and progeny prior to field testing, seedling progeny of 51 crosses were challenged with bulked inocula of the fusiform rust fungus at the U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service Resistance Screening Center in Ashville, North Carolina. We used a high spore load (50,000 spores/ml) of a broad-base field inoculum that covered the entire range of deployment for these pine genotypes. Through this culling, we eliminated genotypes that may be susceptible in the field to rust, and we are able to focus on selection for growth and quality traits in the remaining population. Overall mean disease incidence was 48 percent, which was ideal for assessing genetic variation for a binary trait. Family disease means ranged from 5 percent to 81 percent. We fit a generalized linear mixed model and logit link function to partition observed variance in the response variable (1=gall, 0=no gall) into causal (additive and dominance) components. The genetic control for disease incidence was very high, with family mean heritability of 0.95, and the individual tree narrow-sense heritability was 0.5. Substantial genetic gains can be achieved for fusiform rust disease incidence in loblolly pine in a relatively short time (6 months) using greenhouse screening protocols. Subsequent to the greenhouse screening, we cloned 2,442 full-sib progeny that were non-galled for field testing to carry out selection for growth and stem quality traits. Cloned progeny have been established in various locations in 2009 and 2010 using a resolvable alpha incomplete block design.

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    Citation

    McKeand, Steve; Garcia, Saul; Steiger, Josh; Grissom, Jim; Whetten, Ross; Isik, Fikret. 2012. Tandem selection for fusiform rust sisease resistance to develop a clonal elite breeding population of loblolly pine. In: Sniezko, Richard A.; Yanchuk, Alvin D.; Kliejunas, John T.; Palmieri, Katharine M.; Alexander, Janice M.; Frankel, Susan J., tech. coords. Proceedings of the fourth international workshop on the genetics of host-parasite interactions in forestry: Disease and insect resistance in forest trees. Gen. Tech. Rep. PSW-GTR-240. Albany, CA: Pacific Southwest Research Station, Forest Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture. p. 216.

    Keywords

    forest disease and insect resistance, evolutionary biology, climate change, durable resistance

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