High-density NGS-based map construction and genetic dissection of fruit shape and rind netting in Cucumis melo

Elad Oren, Galil Tzuri, Asaf Dafna, Ayala Meir, Ravindra Kumar, Nurit Katzir, Yonatan Elkind, Shiri Freilich, Arthur A. Schaffer, Yaakov Tadmor, Joseph Burger, Amit Gur

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Melon is an important crop that exhibits broad variation for fruit morphology traits that are the substrate for genetic mapping efforts. In the post-genomic era, the link between genetic maps and physical genome assemblies is key for leveraging QTL mapping results for gene cloning and breeding purposes. Here, using a population of 164 melon recombinant inbred lines (RILs) that were subjected to genotyping-by-sequencing, we constructed and compared high-density sequence- and linkage-based recombination maps that were aligned to the reference melon genome. These analyses reveal the genome-wide variation in recombination frequency and highlight regions of disrupted collinearity between our population and the reference genome. The population was phenotyped over 3 years for fruit size and shape as well as rind netting. Four QTLs were detected for fruit size, and they act in an additive manner, while significant epistatic interaction was found between two neutral loci for this trait. Fruit shape displayed transgressive segregation that was explained by the action of four QTLs, contributed by alleles from both parents. The complexity of rind netting was demonstrated on a collection of 177 diverse accessions. Further dissection of netting in our RILs population, which is derived from a cross of smooth and densely netted parents, confirmed the intricacy of this trait and the involvement of major locus and several other interacting QTLs. A major netting QTL on chromosome 2 co-localized with results from two additional populations, paving the way for future study toward identification of a causative gene for this trait.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)1927-1945
Number of pages19
JournalTheoretical And Applied Genetics
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1 Jun 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biotechnology
  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Genetics


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