2016 Volume 66 Issue 1 Pages 100-115
Recent advancements in genomic analysis technologies have opened up new avenues to promote the efficiency of plant breeding. Novel genomics-based approaches for plant breeding and genetics research, such as genome-wide association studies (GWAS) and genomic selection (GS), are useful, especially in fruit tree breeding. The breeding of fruit trees is hindered by their long generation time, large plant size, long juvenile phase, and the necessity to wait for the physiological maturity of the plant to assess the marketable product (fruit). In this article, we describe the potential of genomics-assisted breeding, which uses these novel genomics-based approaches, to break through these barriers in conventional fruit tree breeding. We first introduce the molecular marker systems and whole-genome sequence data that are available for fruit tree breeding. Next we introduce the statistical methods for biparental linkage and quantitative trait locus (QTL) mapping as well as GWAS and GS. We then review QTL mapping, GWAS, and GS studies conducted on fruit trees. We also review novel technologies for rapid generation advancement. Finally, we note the future prospects of genomics-assisted fruit tree breeding and problems that need to be overcome in the breeding.