New apples selected for fruit quality traits and multiple resistance against pathogen and pests at Bologna University
In the last forty years, the Bologna University apple breeding program produced and evaluated more than 50,000 seedlings from 600 cross combinations. Its goal-oriented strategy is mainly focused on the combination of pathogen and pest resistance with superior fruit quality attributes. The program has placed particular emphasis on introducing different sources of resistance, both monogenic and polygenic, against scab and other diseases and pests. Different resistance traits have been studied at the genetic level to understand their inheritance and with the long term goal of achieving a broader and durable resistance over time. Today, the first selection steps have been concluded on most of the grafted S1 seedlings and the best selections were further grafted for the following selection steps (S2 and S3). The results of these evaluations will identify the best selections for a possible release to the market. In the last few years, the standard phenotypic characterizations have been implemented with additional molecular selection tools to verify the presence in the selected material of some resistance genes such as Rvi6 for scab resistance and Dp-fl for rosy apple aphid resistance. To date, some ecological apples combining scab and aphid resistance with good fruit quality traits have been identified.
Gregori, R., Tartarini, S., Pagliarani, G. and Sansavini, S. (2017). New apples selected for fruit quality traits and multiple resistance against pathogen and pests at Bologna University. Acta Hortic. 1172, 189-196
apple breeding, scab resistance, rosy apple aphid resistance, Marker-assisted selection