Pearl millet is a climate-resilient nutritious crop requiring low inputs and is capable of giving economic returns in marginal agro-ecologies. In this study, we report large-effect iron (Fe) and zinc (Zn) content quantitative trait loci (QTLs) using diversity array technology (DArT) and simple sequence repeats (SSRs) markers to generate a genetic linkage map using 317 recombinant inbred line (RIL) population derived from the (ICMS 8511-S1-17-2-1-1-B-P03 × AIMP 92901-S1-183-2-2-B-08) cross. The base map [seven linkage groups (LGs)] of 196 loci was 964.2 cM in length (Haldane). AIMP 92901-S1-183-2-2-B-08 is an Iniadi line with high grain Fe and Zn, tracing its origin to the Togolese Republic, West Africa. The content of grain Fe in the RIL population ranged between 20 and 131 ppm (parts per million), and that of Zn from 18 to 110 ppm. QTL analysis revealed a large number of QTLs for high grain iron (Fe) and zinc (Zn) content. A total of 19 QTLs for Fe and Zn were detected, of which 11 were for Fe and eight were for Zn. The portion of the observed phenotypic variance explained by different QTLs for grain Fe and Zn content varied from 9.0 to 31.9% (cumulative 74%) and from 9.4 to 30.4% (cumulative 65%), respectively. Three large-effect QTLs for both minerals were co-mapped in this population, one on LG1 and two on LG7. The favorable QTL alleles of both mineral micronutrients were contributed by the male parent (AIMP 92901-deriv-08). Three putative epistasis interactions were observed for Fe content, while a single digenic interaction was found for Zn content. The reported QTLs may be useful in marker-assisted selection (MAS) programs, in genomic selection (GS) breeding pipelines for seed and restorer parents, and in population improvement programs for pearl millet
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