Submitted to: Bramble: The Newsletter of the North American Branble Growers Association, Inc.
Publication Type: Other
Publication Acceptance Date: November 2, 2004
Publication Date: March 15, 2005
Citation: Lewers, K.S. 2005. Ssr markers for brambles. Bramble: The Newsletter of the North American Branble Growers Association, Inc. P.10-11.
Traditional bramble breeding relies on years of evaluation to allow a breeder to select potential cultivars. As a result, the process of developing new bramble cultivars can take longer than breeders, nurseries, and growers would prefer. In the future, breeders will have available genetic assay tools called simple sequence repeat molecular markers (SSRs) that will allow them to select indirectly for traits that usually take years to become evident. To develop SSR markers for brambles, we collaborated with Dr. Julie Graham of the Scottish Crop Research Institute (SCRI) to test 66 SSRs she developed from the red raspberry cultivar, 'Glen Moy', and the North American Bramble Growers' Association (NABGA) provided the funding to purchase these SSR markers for testing. We also collaborated with Dr. Courtney Weber of Cornell University and Dr. John Cark of the University of Arkansas. Dr. Weber has a black raspberry ('Jewel') × red raspberry (NY322) population, and Dr. Clark has a blackberry population ('APF-12' × 'Arapaho') suitable for testing the 66 SSRs. Our objective was to find out which of the SSRs could be used to indirectly select for traits before they become evident in the field. We determined that 45 of the SSR markers can be used with the raspberry population, and 14 SSR markers can be used with the blackberry population. This is an improvement, but the number still falls far short of the desired number of over 100 SSR markers. The findings from this NABGA-funded research were used to support a request for the purchase of over 2,000 blackberry DNA sequences from which we expect to be able to develop 200 new SSR markers for use on these two populations.