2011 Volume 61 Issue 4 Pages 394-404
Photoperiod sensitivity is an important trait related to crop adaptation and ecological breeding in common buckwheat (Fagopyrum esculentum Moench). Although photoperiod sensitivity in this species is thought to be controlled by quantitative trait loci (QTLs), no genes or regions related to photoperiod sensitivity had been identified until now. Here, we identified QTLs controlling photoperiod sensitivity by QTL analysis in a segregating F4 population (n = 100) derived from a cross of two autogamous lines, 02AL113(Kyukei SC2)LH.self and C0408-0 RP. The F4 progenies were genotyped with three markers for photoperiod-sensitivity candidate genes, which were identified based on homology to photoperiod-sensitivity genes in Arabidopsis and 76 expressed sequence tag markers. Among the three photoperiod-sensitivity candidate genes (FeCCA1, FeELF3 and FeCOL3) identified in common buckwheat, FeELF3 was associated with photoperiod sensitivity. Two EST regions, Fest_L0606_4 and Fest_L0337_6, were associated with photoperiod sensitivity and explained 20.0% and 14.2% of the phenotypic variation, respectively. For both EST regions, the allele from 02AL113(Kyukei SC2)LH.self led to early flowering. An epistatic interaction was also confirmed between Fest_L0606_4 and Fest_L0337_6. These results demonstrate that photoperiod sensitivity in common buckwheat is controlled by a pathway consisting of photoperiod-sensitivity candidate genes as well as multiple gene action.