Ergot reaction of pearl millet hybrids affected by fertility restoration and genetic resistance of parental lines. uri icon

abstract

  • High ergot (Claviceps fusiformis Loveless) susceptibility of pearl millet (Pennisetum glaucum (L.) R. Br.) hybrids has often been associated with the A1 cytoplasm of male-sterile lines (A-lines). To understand the underlying basis of this association and to examine the prospects of breeding ergot-resistant hybrids, we evaluated 56 hybrids and their 15 parental lines for ergot reaction and selfed seedset for 2 years in disease nurseries at ICRISAT Asia Center. Hybrids were made by crossing seven pollen parents (2 susceptible and 5 resistant) onto two resistant and two susceptible A-lines, and their four corresponding maintainer lines (B-lines). A-lines had no selfed seedset while B-lines had 32?75% selfed seedset. Hybrids of A-lines had significantly less selfed seedset than the hybrids of the corresponding B-lines. The reduced seedset of A-lines and their hybrids, however, was not always accompanied by significantly higher ergot susceptibility. Highly resistant hybrids were obtained where both A-lines and pollen parents were highly resistant, regardless of male fertility levels of the hybrids. Thus, although the A1 cytoplasm, by its reduction of male fertility, had a large and significant effect in increasing ergot severity of hybrids, the contribution of nuclear genetic factors of female parents was about 1.8 times larger than that of the cytoplasm

publication date

  • 1995
  • 1995