Molecular screening of rice (Oryza sativa L.) germplasm for Xa4, xa5 and Xa21 bacterial leaf blight (BLB) resistant genes using linked marker approach

  • Muhammad Sabar
  • Tahira Bibi
  • Hafiz Umar Farooq
  • Zulqarnain Haider
  • Imad Naseem
  • Abid Mahmood
  • Muhammad Akhter
Keywords: Molecular screening, rice germplasm, Xa4, xa5 and Xa21 genes, bacterial leaf blight


Bacterial leaf blight (BLB) caused by Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae (Xoo) has now become one of major rice diseases. During recent years, its occurrence has increased in Pakistan, particularly in ‘Kallar tract’ which is well-known for quality rice cultivation. Development of new resistant varieties by utilizing the available resistant gene-pool is most reliable breeding technique for the plant breeders. The present study was conducted to explore the genetic resources regarding presence and absence of BLB resistance genes Xa4, xa5 and Xa21 through DNA marker technology. Effectiveness of Xa21 followed by xa5 and Xa7 genes has been reported to confer more resistance level for BLB in traditional rice belt of Pakistan. For this purpose, eighty (80) rice genotypes comprising of diverse origin including three isogenic lines viz., IRBB4 (carrying Xa4), IRBB5 (carrying xa5) and IRBB21 (carrying Xa21) as positive resistant gene checks and IR24 (carrying none of these) as negative gene check were genotyped. DNA fingerprinting results indicated the presence of Xa4 gene in 41 entries, while 14 lines were positive for xa5 gene. Only one local line was carrying Xa21 gene along with Xa4. Thus, the present study will not only be helpful for rice breeders to develop new rice varieties carrying disease resistant genes, but will also provide the donors to incorporate / pyramid disease resistant genes in popular rice varieties like Super Basmati and Basmati 515 which are susceptible to BLB disease.

Keywords: Molecular screening, rice germplasm, Xa4, xa5 and Xa21 genes, bacterial leaf blight


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eISSN: 1684-5315