Submitted to: Crop Science
Publication Type: Peer reviewed journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/9/2003
Publication Date: 1/15/2004
Citation: Chen, Y., Nelson, R.L. 2004. Identification and characterization of a white-flowered wild soybean plant. Crop Science. 44:339-342. Interpretive Summary: White flowers and purple flowers are equally common in soybean lines in the USDA Soybean Germplasm Collection but all of the wild soybean lines in the USDA Soybean Germplasm Collection have purple flowers. There have been reports of wild soybean lines with white flowers in China but many of these lines have traits not typical of wild soybean indicating they may have been produced by crosses between soybean and wild soybeans. We found a wild soybean plant with white flowers and demonstrated that it was a mutant in a purple flowered line. We also showed that the gene controlling flower color in this line was the same gene controlling flower color in the soybean. These results show conclusively that wild soybeans can have white flowers but they do not explain why this trait is so rare. The results of this research will be of interest to soybean geneticists and germplasm specialists who can use this rare genotype in future research on soybean evolution and mutation.
Technical Abstract: No white-flowered accession exists among the more than 1,100 Glycine soja accessions in the USDA Soybean Germplasm Collection, although one-third of the Glycine max accessions are white-flowered. One white-flowered plant was found in G. soja accession PI 424008A growing in Stoneville, Mississippi in 1998. The objective of this research is to clarify the origin of this white-flowered plant. Phenotypic traits and DNA markers were used to compare the white-flowered line with the putative parental line, PI 424008A. The results from all of the data show that the white-flowered plant is very similar to PI 424008A indicating that the white-flowered plant was produced by a mutation in PI 424008A. The white flowered line has been added to the USDA Soybean Germplasm Collection and is designated as PI 424008C.