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      Effect of drought stress on the genetic architecture of photosynthate allocation and remobilization in pods of common bean ( Phaseolus vulgaris L.), a key species for food security

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          Common bean is the most important staple grain legume for direct human consumption and nutrition. It complements major sources of carbohydrates, including cereals, root crop, or plantain, as a source of dietary proteins. It is also a significant source of vitamins and minerals like iron and zinc. To fully play its nutritional role, however, its robustness against stresses needs to be strengthened. Foremost among these is drought, which commonly affects its productivity and seed quality. Previous studies have shown that photosynthate remobilization and partitioning is one of the main mechanisms of drought tolerance and overall productivity in common bean.


          In this study, we sought to determine the inheritance of pod harvest index (PHI), a measure of the partitioning of pod biomass to seed biomass, relative to that of grain yield. We evaluated a recombinant inbred population of the cross of ICA Bunsi and SXB405, both from the Mesoamerican gene pool, to determine the effects of intermittent and terminal drought stresses on the genetic architecture of photosynthate allocation and remobilization in pods of common bean. The population was grown for two seasons, under well-watered conditions and terminal and intermittent drought stress in one year, and well-watered conditions and terminal drought stress in the second year. There was a significant effect of the water regime and year on all the traits, at both the phenotypic and QTL levels. We found nine QTLs for pod harvest index, including a major (17% of variation explained), stable QTL on linkage group Pv07. We also found eight QTLs for yield, three of which clustered with PHI QTLs, underscoring the importance of photosynthate remobilization in productivity. We also found evidence for substantial epistasis, explaining a considerable part of the variation for yield and PHI.


          Our results highlight the genetic relationship between PHI and yield and confirm the role of PHI in selection of both additive and epistatic effects controlling drought tolerance. These results are a key component to strengthen the robustness of common bean against drought stresses.

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          The online version of this article (10.1186/s12870-019-1774-2) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

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          Most cited references 79

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            A general and simple method for obtainingR2from generalized linear mixed-effects models

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              MapChart: software for the graphical presentation of linkage maps and QTLs.

               R Voorrips (2002)

                Author and article information

                BMC Plant Biol
                BMC Plant Biol
                BMC Plant Biology
                BioMed Central (London )
                30 April 2019
                30 April 2019
                : 19
                [1 ]ISNI 0000 0004 1936 9684, GRID grid.27860.3b, Department of Plant Sciences, , University of California, ; Davis, CA USA
                [2 ]ISNI 0000 0004 1937 0722, GRID grid.11899.38, Cell and Molecular Biology Laboratory, Centro de Energia Nuclear na Agricultura (CENA), , Universidade de São Paulo, ; Piracicaba, SP Brazil
                [3 ]Present Address: Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Campus Litoral Norte, Imbé, RS Brazil
                [4 ]ISNI 0000 0001 0943 556X, GRID grid.418348.2, Centro Internacional de Agricultura Tropical (CIAT), ; Cali, Colombia
                [5 ]ISNI 0000 0004 0404 0958, GRID grid.463419.d, United States Department of Agriculture, , Plant Polymer Research Unit, National Center for Agricultural Utilization Research, Agricultural Research Service, ; Peoria, Il USA
                © The Author(s). 2019

                Open AccessThis article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

                Funded by: USDA NIFA AFRI
                Award ID: 2016-67013-24460
                Award Recipient :
                Research Article
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                © The Author(s) 2019


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