Mapping aluminum tolerance loci in cereals: A tool available for crop breeding
Present address: #Departamento de Biología, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad de La Serena, La Serena, Chile.
Financial support: Fondecyt Project Nº11080231, C. Inostroza-Blancheteau was supported by a PhD fellowship from CONICYT-Chile and F. Aquea is supported by a Postdoctoral Project “Programa Bicentenario de Ciencia y Tecnología CONICYT Banco Mundial” PSD74 2006 and the Millennium Nucleus for Plant Functional Genomics (P06-009-F).
Keywords: ALMT1, aluminum tolerance, cereals, marker-assisted selection, organic acid.
Aluminum (Al) toxicity is the main factor limiting crop productivity in acidic soils around the world. In cereals, this problem reduces crop yields by 30-40%. The use of DNA-based markers linked to phenotypic traits is an interesting alternative approach. Strategies such as molecular marker-assisted selection (MAS) in conjunction with bioinformatics-based tools such as graphical genotypes (GGT) have been important for confirming introgression of genes or genomic regions in cereals but also to reduce the time and cost of identifying them through genetic selection. These biotechnologies also make it possible to identify target genes or quantitative trait loci (QTL) that can be potentially used in similar crops to increase their productivity. This review presents the main advances in the genetic improvement of cereals for Al-tolerance.