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A Test of Taxonomic and Biogeographic Predictivity: Resistance to Soft Rot in Wild Relatives of Cultivated Potato

February 2011 , Volume 101 , Number  2
Pages  205 - 212

Yong Suk Chung, Karsten Holmquist, David M. Spooner, and Shelley H. Jansky

First author: Department of Horticulture, and second, third, and fourth authors: United States Department of Agriculture–Agricultural Research Service and Department of Horticulture, University of Wisconsin, 1575 Linden Drive, Madison 53706.

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Accepted for publication 2 September 2010.

The concept that traits should be associated with related organisms and that nearby populations of the same species are likely to be more similar to each other than to populations spread far apart has long been accepted. Consequently, taxonomic relationships and biogeographical data are commonly believed to have the power to predict the distribution of disease resistance genes among plant species. In this study, we test claims of such predictivity in a group of widely distributed wild potato species. There was no clear association between resistance to soft rot and taxonomic relationships. However, we have found some associations between resistance to soft rot and environmental data such as annual precipitation and annual mean temperature. In addition, we have noted that high levels of resistance are mostly found in species with high levels of phenotypic plasticity. The three most resistant species were Solanum paucijugum, S. brevicaule, and S. commersonii.

Additional keywords: Pectobacterium, selection pressure.

This article is in the public domain and not copyrightable. It may be freely reprinted with customary crediting of the source. The American Phytopathological Society, 2011.