Reducing the tetraploid non-nodulating alfalfa (Medicago sativa) MnNC-1008(NN) germ plasm to the diploid level

G. Endre, P. Kaló, M. Hangyel Tárczy, G. Csanádi, G. B. Kiss

Research output: Article

4 Citations (Scopus)


MnNC-1008(NN) (referred to as MN-1008) is a tetraploid alfalfa mutant with two recessive genes (nn1 and nn2) conditioning the non-nodulating trait. The tetraploid level (2n=4x=32) of this Medicago sativa germ plasm was reduced to the diploid (2n=2x=16) level using the 4x-2x genetic cross originally described as a workable method for the induction of haploidy in alfalfa by T. E. Bingham. In our experiments more than 7000 emasculated flowers of a single non-nodulating MN-1008 mutant alfalfa plant with purple petals were cross-pollinated with pollen from a single, diploid, yellow-flowered alfalfa plant. Mature seeds from these crosses were collected and germinated, after which the plants were subjected to morphological and cytogenetic analyses as well as to DNA fingerprinting. Out of 26 viable progeny, 6 were hybrid plants, 19 proved to be self-mated derivatives of MN-1008, while one descendant turned out to be a diploid (2n=2x=16), purple flowered, non-nodulating plant denoted as M. sativa DN-1008. This diploid, non-nodulating alfalfa plant can serve as starting material to facilitate the comprehensive morphological, physiological and genetic analysis (gene mapping and cloning) of nodulation in order to learn more about the biology of the symbiotic root nodule development. To produce diploid, nodulating hybrid F1 plants, DN-1008 was crossed with a diploid, yellow-flowered M. sativa ssp. quasifalcata plant. An F2 population segregating the nn1 and nn2 genes in a diploid manner, in which the genetic analysis is more simple than in a tetraploid population, can be established by self-mating of the F1 plants.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1061-1065
Number of pages5
JournalTheoretical and Applied Genetics
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - nov. 1996

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Genetics

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