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Construction and application of a multifunctional ultra-dense genetic map of potato

Contract nr: FAIR-CT97-3565
Project nr: 3565
Project type: SC
Starting date: 01/04/1998
Duration: 54 months
Total cost: 1,719,000 EUR
EC Contribution: 1,719,000 EUR
Scientific Officer: Richard HARDWICK
Research topic: Plant health
Acronym: Ultra-high density map of potato

Molecular markers are indispensable tools for generating linkage maps and have provided a major contribution to the genetic knowledge of many cultivated plant species. In addition to being of basic importance to genetic and evolutionary studies, molecular markers are useful to localise monogenic and polygenic traits and to allow for the efficient introgression and selection of individuals with specific characteristics by Marker Assisted Selection (MAS). Moreover, molecular markers play a crucial role in the isolation of plant genes by map-based cloning. Currently, the combined RFLP maps of the potato and tomato genome comprise approximately 1,000 markers representing an average spacing of approximately 1.2 cM (ca. 900 kb). This map has proven useful for several research applications, but has serious shortcomings for many routine purposes, which hinders its wide-spread application in commercial breeding programmes. The primary technique (Restriction Fragment Length Polymorphisms - RFLP) is too laborious, and tracing informative polymorphisms in new potato genotypes is a time-consuming 'trial and error' process. In addition, the number of available markers is still limited for various important applications.

The objectives of this project are:
(I) to construct an ultra-high density linkage map (UHD-map) of potato comprising more than 16,000 AFLP markers;
(II) to exploit the ultra-high density genetic map.

(1) This will serve multiple purposes ranging from the dissection of simple and complex phenotypes (including quantitative trait loci (QTLs), marker-assisted breeding to positional gene cloning. Detailed marker information will be made available to the 'global community' via the World Wide Web (WWW). Because of the conserved linkage order and limited sequence divergence, the potato map will also be highly informative for other Solanaceous crop species, such as tomato and pepper; (2) Here, seven potato genotypes expressing high levels of quantitative resistance to potato cyst nematodes (PCN) will be analysed by QTL of specially constructed segregating populations. Dissection of these resistant phenotypes into their single genetic components will allow the identification of a set of genes conferring durable and broad spectrum resistance against potato cyst nematodes in Europe. Tightly linked molecular markers will be converted into allele-specific PCR-based markers, which can be used for marker-assisted breeding. To demonstrate the utility of the UHD-map, at least one PCN resistance gene will be isolated.

Wageningen Agricultural University
Costerweg 50
NL-6700 HB Wageningen
Tel.: +31 317 48 31 37
Fax: +31 317 48 42 54


    Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique
    INRA Domaine St Paul
    F-84914 Avignon
    Tel.: +33 4 90 31 63 22
    Fax: +33 4 90 31 63 98

  • Enrique RITTER
    AZTI - Instituto Tecnologico Pesquero y Alimentario SA
    Isla De Txatxarramendi S/N
    E-48396 Sukarrieta
    Tel.: +34 94 528 13 00
    Fax: +34 94 528 14 22

  • Evert JACOBSEN
    Wageningen Agricultural University
    Costerweg 50
    NL-6700 HB Wageningen
    Tel.: +31 317 48 28 59
    Fax: +31 317 48 34 57


  • Robbie WAUGH
    The Scottish Crop Research Institute Company (limited by guarantee and having charitable status)
    UK-DD2 5DA Dundee
    Tel.: +44 1382 56 27 31
    Fax: +44 1382 56 24 26
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