Power of the joint segregation analysis method for testing mixed major-gene and polygene inheritance models of quantitative traits uri icon

abstract

  • Understanding the genetic architecture of quantitative traits can greatly assist the design of strategies for their manipulation in plant-breeding programs. For a number of traits, genetic variation can be the result of segregation of a few major genes and many polygenes (minor genes). The joint segregation analysis (JSA) is a maximum-likelihood approach for fitting segregation models through the simultaneous use of phenotypic information from multiple generations. Our objective in this paper was to use computer simulation to quantify the power of the JSA method for testing the mixed-inheritance model for quantitative traits when it was applied to the six basic generations: both parents (P-1 and P-2), F-1, F-2, and both backcross generations (B-1 and B-2) derived from crossing the F-1 to each parent. A total of 1968 genetic model-experiment scenarios were considered in the simulation study to quantify the power of the method. Factors that interacted to influence the power of the JSA method to correctly detect genetic models were: (1) whether there were one or two major genes in combination with polygenes, (2) the heritability of the major genes and polygenes, (3) the level of dispersion of the major genes and polygenes between the two parents, and (4) the number of individuals examined in each generation (population size). The greatest levels of power were observed for the genetic models defined with simple inheritance; e.g., the power was greater than 90% for the one major gene model, regardless of the population size and major-gene heritability. Lower levels of power were observed for the genetic models with complex inheritance (major genes and polygenes), low heritability, small population sizes and a large dispersion of favourable genes among the two parents; e.g., the power was less than 5% for the two major-gene model with a heritability value of 0.3 and population sizes of 100 individuals. The JSA methodology was then applied to a previously studied sorghum data-set to investigate the genetic control of the putative drought resistance-trait osmotic adjustment in three crosses. The previous study concluded that there were two major genes segregating for osmotic adjustment in the three crosses. Application of the JSA method resulted in a change in the proposed genetic model. The presence of the two major genes was confirmed with the addition of an unspecified number of polygenes.

publication date

  • 2001
  • 2001