Natural variation for BYDV resistance in maize


With increasing winter temperatures, Barley yellow dwarf virus (BYDV) is expected to become a prominent problem also in maize cultivation. Breeding for resistance is the best alternative to control the disease and break the transmission cycle of the virus. The objectives of our study were to (I) determine phenotypic and genotypic variation in five segregating populations of maize with respect to BYDV tolerance or resistance as well as (II) quantify the influence of BYDV infection on plant performance traits. In 2011, five segregating populations with a total of 445 genotypes were grown at two locations in Germany. Plants were inoculated with BYDV-PAV transmitted by aphids of the species Rhopalosiphum padi. We observed considerable genotypic variance for the traits virus concentration as measured by double antibody sandwich enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (DAS-ELISA) as well as expression of symptoms. Furthermore, heritabilities were high for the plant performance traits ear height and plant height. Correlation coefficients between all pairs of traits were significantly different from 0 (P < 0.05). Genotypes of the inoculated variant were reduced in plant height by 3 cm, ear height by 6 cm, and flowered 3 days earlier compared to genotypes of the non-inoculated variant. The results of our study suggested a high potential for breeding of BVDY resistant / tolerant maize.


Luteovirus; Zea mays; transmission cycle

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