Inheritance of Black Pericarp Trait in Sorghum
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Black sorghum is rich in health benefits and potential for the natural food markets. It has the highest levels of antioxidants of any cereal crop and contains other phenolic compounds of interest, such as tannin and 3-deoxyanthocyanidin. However, it is lower yielding than other commercial hybrids, with only 64% of the yield, and when crossing a black sorghum with other elite grain sorghums, the black pericarp trait is recovered on a very low percentage of the offspring. Therefore, there is a need for a stable commercial hybrid be created. Relatively little is known of the genetic effects and heritability of the black pericarp trait, so to better understand the inheritance pattern, a generation means analysis was performed on a cross between Tx3362, a black sorghum, and BTx623, a white elite hybrid. JMP Pro 11.0.0 and a joint scale test were used to analyze the material. The black pericarp trait was found to be recessive, controlled by many genes, highly epistatic, and heritable. Although more research into this trait will be necessary to fully comprehend the complexities of the genes controlling it, selecting for this trait to create high yielding black sorghum populations should be possible for breeders.
Hill, Kathleen Marie (2015). Inheritance of Black Pericarp Trait in Sorghum. Honors and Undergraduate Research. Available electronically from