A chromosomal region originating from Malus floribunda 821 confers Vf scab resistance to many isolates of Venturia inaequalis. Twelve DNA markers located in this region were used to scan the equivalent of 31 cM in 98 Malus accessions. This allowed a molecular diagnosis of a source of resistance in apple germplasm with the aid of pedigree information, and in the context of a limited marker survey representing other chromosomes. At least five marker alleles were present in all scab-resistant breeding selections or varieties arising from M. floribunda. The validity of findings based on RAPD markers was confirmed with SCAR assays and Southern-hybridisation experiments. The order of markers determined in previous mapping studies was confirmed and sets of recombinants identified that establish reliable fine-mapping orders within 0.7 cM of the resistance locus. None of the marker alleles were present in the accessions that are either susceptible or possess weak polygenic resistance to scab. The presence of some alleles corresponding to those present at least 5.3 cM from Vf in M. floribunda was detected in some accessions. Other major sources of scab resistance do not appear to possess alleles in common with the Vf region, which will simplify future allelism tests. The results are discussed in the context of the introgression of resistance loci together with marker-assisted selection. The use of breeding pedigrees to assist in fine-scale mapping and map-based cloning is discussed
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