U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Dot gov

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.


Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.


Main content area

Coupling of MIC-3 overexpression with the chromosomes 11 and 14 root-knot nematode (RKN) (Meloidogyne incognita) resistance QTLs provides insights into the regulation of the RKN resistance response in Upland cotton (Gossypium hirsutum)

Martin J. Wubben, Franklin E. Callahan, Johnie N. Jenkins, Dewayne D. Deng
Theoretical and applied genetics 2016 v.129 no.9 pp. 1759-1767
Gossypium hirsutum, Meloidogyne incognita, additive effect, chromosomes, cotton, egg production, eggs, epistasis, gene overexpression, genetic markers, genetically modified organisms, genotype, marker-assisted selection, pest resistance, proteins, quantitative trait loci, root galls, root-knot nematodes, transfer DNA, transgenes
KEY MESSAGE : Genetic analysis of MIC-3 transgene with RKN resistance QTLs provides insight into the resistance regulatory mechanism and provides a framework for testing additional hypotheses. Resistance to root-knot nematode (RKN) (Meloidogyne incognita) in Upland cotton (Gossypium hirsutum) is mediated by two major quantitative trait loci (QTL) located on chromosomes 11 and 14. The MIC-3 (Meloidogyne Induced Cotton3) protein accumulates specifically within the immature galls of RKN-resistant plants that possess these QTLs. Recently, we showed that MIC-3 overexpression in an RKN-susceptible cotton genotype suppressed RKN egg production but not RKN-induced root galling. In this study, the MIC-3 overexpression construct T-DNA in the single-copy transgenic line ‘14-7-1’ was converted into a codominant molecular marker that allowed the marker assisted selection of F₂:₃ cotton lines, derived from a cross between 14-7-1 and M-240 RNR, having all possible combinations of the chromosomes 11 and 14 QTLs with and without the MIC-3 overexpression construct. Root-knot nematode reproduction (eggs g⁻¹ root) and severity of RKN-induced root galling were assessed in these lines. We discovered that the addition of MIC-3 overexpression suppressed RKN reproduction in lines lacking both resistance QTLs and in lines having only the chromosome 14 QTL, suggesting an additive effect of the MIC-3 construct with this QTL. In contrast, MIC-3 overexpression did not improve resistance in lines having the single chromosome 11 QTL or in lines having both resistance QTLs, suggesting an epistatic interaction between the chromosome 11 QTL and the MIC-3 construct. Overexpression of MIC-3 did not affect the severity of RKN-induced root galling regardless of QTL genotype. These data provide new insights into the relative order of action of the chromosomes 11 and 14 QTLs and their potential roles in regulating MIC-3 expression as part of the RKN resistance response.