First and second authors: Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences; and third author: Department of Crop Sciences, University of Illinois, Urbana 61801
Partial resistance to Stewart's wilt (Erwina stewartii, syn. Pantoea stewartii), northern corn leaf blight (NCLB) (Exserohilum turcicum), and common rust (Puccinia sorghi) was observed in an F2:3 population developed from a cross between the inbred sweet corn lines IL731a and W6786. The objective of this study was to identify quantitative trait loci (QTL) associated with partial resistance using restriction fragment length polymorphic markers. Phenotypic data were collected for 2 years for Stewart's wilt, NCLB, and common rust but, due to significant family-environment interaction, analysis was conducted individually on data from each year. In 2 years of evaluation for the three diseases, a total of 33 regions in the maize genome were associated with partial resistance describing from 5.9 to 18% of the total phenotypic variability. Of six regions common in both years, three were associated with partial resistance to Stewart's wilt (chromosomes 4:07, 5:03, and 6:04), one was associated with NCLB (chromosome 9:05), and two were associated with common rust (chromosomes 2:04 and 3:04). The rust QTL on 3S mapped to within 20 cM of the rp3 locus and explained 17.7% of the phenotypic variability. Some of the QTL associated with partial resistance to the three diseases have been reported previously, and some are described here for the first time. Results suggest it may be possible to consolidate QTL from various elite backgrounds in a manner analogous to the pyramiding of major resistance genes. We also report here on two QTL associated with anthocyanin production on chromosomes 10:6 and 5:03 in the general location of the a2 gene.