Skip to main content
ARS Home » Midwest Area » Madison, Wisconsin » Cereal Crops Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #364607

Research Project: Identifying the Next Generation of Malting Barley Through Improved Selection Criteria and Quality Analysis of Breeding Lines

Location: Cereal Crops Research

Title: An MKK3 allele affects seed dormancy at physiological maturity in common barley varieties (Hordeum vulgare)

item VETCH, JUSTIN - Montana State University
item MARTIN, JACK - Montana State University
item Walling, Jason
item GIROUX, MIKE - Montana State University

Submitted to: National Association of Plant Breeders
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/29/2019
Publication Date: N/A
Citation: N/A

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Artificial selection has imposed selection against barley seed dormancy. Reduced dormancy has resulted in increased susceptibility of malt varieties to preharvest sprouting, which is the precocious germination of grain while still on the ear. PHS reduces grain quality, making the barley no longer suitable for malting. This has a large negative economic impact on farmers that then must sell their barley as feed. Much of the observed variation in PHS resistance is genetic with previous reports indicating that the HvMKK3, HvQsd1 and the HvMFT genes play important roles. Thus, our research project’s goal is to identify and explore genes impacting PHS among commonly grown Northern Great Plains malting barley varieties. One hundred fifteen barley varieties were grown over two years (x3 reps each year) and PHS susceptibility was assessed. About 110 of the varieties were genotyped by direct sequencing of HvMKK3, HvQsd1, and HvMFT. We observed four HvMKK3 alleles, two HvQsd1 alleles and two HvMFT alleles. Our results indicate at least one HvMKK3 mutation is associated with a large increase in PHS susceptibility in multiple popular malting varieties. Our results also indicate that the previously described HvQsd1 mutation, F214L, is associated with increased PHS resistance. Variation in HvMFT was not observed to be significantly associated with PHS as each mutant allele was found in only a single variety. To better characterize effects of the novel HvMKK3 allele and known Qsd1 alleles in Northern Great Plains malting barley, four varieties from the previous analysis were chosen based on their genotyping, yield, product quality, and PHS scores to create barley bi-parental populations. The results of this study indicate potential to breed for a specific window of high seed dormancy that quickly degenerates after harvest.