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ARS Home » Midwest Area » St. Paul, Minnesota » Plant Science Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #379616

Research Project: Novel Strategies for Durable Disease Resistance in Wheat and Oat

Location: Plant Science Research

Title: Evaluating milling and baking quality associated with a Fusarium head blight resistance-enhancing genome deletion in wheat

item Garvin, David
item Dykes, Linda

Submitted to: Cereal Research Communications
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 11/18/2020
Publication Date: 1/6/2021
Citation: Garvin, D.F., Dykes, L. 2021. Evaluating milling and baking quality associated with a Fusarium head blight resistance-enhancing genome deletion in wheat. Cereal Research Communications. 49:413-419.

Interpretive Summary: The disease Fusarium head blight has caused significant economic damage to the U.S. wheat crop. While conventional breeding has resulted in progress toward more resistant varieties, this resistance is partial and can be overcome in years favoring disease development. Recently, a novel source of Fusarium head blight resistance was discovered that is associated with the loss of a segment of a particular wheat chromosome. This represents a new resource for plant breeders to use in developing more disease-resistant wheat. However, because the size of the deletion is rather large, a large number of genes are lost. In this study, we sought to determine if the deletion may eliminate any genes important to end-use quality of wheat, because if so the potential value of the deletion as a breeding tool would be reduced. Grain from the wheat line with the deletion and the parent line from which it derived was used to evaluate a suite of characteristics that impact end-use quality, including various kernel characteristics, milling properties, dough properties, and finally bread-baking properties. Two characteristics differed between the wheat lines. The most significant of these was grain protein. The line with the deletion contained more grain protein than its parent line. As well, the flour of the deletion line possessed approximately 21% more protein than its parent line. Otherwise, the deletion had no detrimental effect on end-use quality characteristics. Thus, the deletion can be used as a breeding tool without deleteriously affecting wheat end-use properties. By improving Fusarium head blight resistance in wheat, crop yield and quality will be improved. This in turn will improve farm gate profits and food security. The deletion may also benefit human nutrition due to its protein-enhancing effect.

Technical Abstract: Wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) breeding involves improvement of a wide range of traits. However, selection for these traits is only acceptable if the end use quality of the wheat is not compromised. In hard red spring wheat, the predominant end use of flour is bread. In this study, milling and baking quality characteristics were compared in the hard red spring wheat ‘Apogee’ and a near-isogenic line of Apogee (‘A30’) that contains a spontaneous segmental deletion of the long arm of chromosome arm 3DL that is associated with enhanced resistance to Fusarium head blight caused by the fungal pathogen Fusarium graminearum (Schwabe). Apogee and A30 were grown together in replicated greenhouse experiments, and the resultant grain was used to compare a diverse spectrum of grain characteristics and milling and baking properties of the grain in the two wheat genotypes. The major difference detected was a significant increase in protein content in A30, which had nearly 21% more flour protein than Apogee. This difference did not affect any of the flour properties or baking characteristics evaluated, suggesting that the increased protein concentrations in A30 are not associated with the principal seed storage properties associated with baking quality. These results indicate that despite the size of the deletion in A30, no key genes associated with end-use quality are located on that chromosome segment. The deletion may therefore find use in efforts to enhance Fusarium head blight in hard red spring wheat.