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Development of backcross generations and new interspecific hybrid combinations for introgression breeding in eggplant (Solanum melongena)

Brice Kouassi, Jaime Prohens, Pietro Gramazio, Abou B. Kouassi, Santiago Vilanova, Alberto Galán-Ávila, Francisco J. Herraiz, Auguste Kouassi, Jose M. Seguí-Simarro, Mariola Plazas
Scientia horticulturae 2016 v.213 pp. 199-207
Solanum melongena, backcrossing, eggplants, gene pool, genetic background, genetic improvement, hybrids, interspecific hybridization, introgression, ovule culture, parents, pollen, viability, wild relatives
Introgression breeding can contribute to broadening the genetic background of eggplant (Solanum melongena). We used six eggplant varieties and 44 interspecific hybrids between these eggplant accessions and 10 accessions of wild relatives from the primary genepool species S. insanum and secondary genepool species S. anguivi, S. dasyphyllum, S. incanum, S. lichtensteinii, and S. tomentosum to obtain first backcross generations to S. melongena. Pollen viability in cultivated and wild parents and interspecific hybrids with S. insanum was high, while for interspecific hybrids with secondary genepool species it was variable. First backcross generations to S. melongena were obtained with interspecific hybrids of all the wild species, with the best results being obtained in crosses with hybrids between S. melongena and S. insanum. However, ample differences were observed among eggplant varieties in the success of the crosses. Additionally, the six eggplant varieties were crossed with secondary genepool species S. campylacanthum, S. lidii and S. vespertilio and with tertiary genepool species S. bonariense, S. elaeagnifolium and S. sisymbriifolium with the aim of obtaining new interspecific hybrids. Successful interspecific hybridization was achieved with the three new secondary genepool species tested and, using embryo rescue, with the tertiary genepool species S. elaeagnifolium. The new backcross generations and interspecific hybrids obtained will contribute to broadening the genetic background of the eggplant and to the genetic enhancement of this crop.