Breeding Euphorbia lagascae for large-scale production of vernolic acid, an important industrial epoxidized ester

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Istaitieh, Maram
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University of Guelph

Euphorbia lagascae is grown because of vernolic acid, an epoxidized fatty acid that has multiple industrial uses. The objective of this thesis was to determine the genetic control of seed germination and seed shattering traits. Five different wild-type genotypes of E. lagascae that demonstrated high germination potential were crossed with an EMS mutant genotype that produces non-shattering capsules. The F2 populations were separated into three different treatments: light, GA3, and control. Consequently, the plants treated with around 250 µmol of light showed improvement in germination up to 75% in cross A and 82.4 % in cross B. The chi-square test indicated that the expression of seed germination, when treated with light, is simply inherited as 3:1 segregation ratio for germinated vs. not germinated seeds, indicating of a single gene with dominance gene action. The same conclusion was reached when phenotyping for the shattering trait for the subpopulations treated with light.

Sicl1, DOG1, EMS, PVC, ABA, vernolic acid, Euphorbia lagascae, EFA, epoxy fatty acid, PD, physiological dormancy, MD, morphological dormancy, WTs, wild-type plants, Mutant, mutant plants, SRI, shattering resistance index, pdh1, NS: non-shattering capsules, S: Shattered capsules, shattering, protogyny