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Free Content Corn hybrids display lower metabolite variability and complex metabolite inheritance patterns

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Summary

We conducted a comparative analysis of the root metabolome of six parental maize inbred lines and their 14 corresponding hybrids showing fresh weight heterosis. We demonstrated that the metabolic profiles not only exhibit distinct features for each hybrid line compared with its parental lines, but also separate reciprocal hybrids. Reconstructed metabolic networks, based on robust correlations between metabolic profiles, display a higher network density in most hybrids as compared with the corresponding inbred lines. With respect to metabolite level inheritance, additive, dominant and overdominant patterns are observed with no specific overrepresentation. Despite the observed complexity of the inheritance pattern, for the majority of metabolites the variance observed in all 14 hybrids is lower compared with inbred lines. Deviations of metabolite levels from the average levels of the hybrids correlate negatively with biomass, which could be applied for developing predictors of hybrid performance based on characteristics of metabolite patterns.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Max-Planck Institute of Molecular Plant Physiology, Am Mühlenberg 1, 14476 Potsdam, Germany 2: Lehrstuhl für Genetik, Technische Universität München, Emil-Ramann-Strasse 8, 85354 Freising, Germany 3: Institute of Crop Science, University of Hohenheim, Fruwirthstrasse 23, 70599 Stuttgart, Germany

Publication date: October 1, 2011

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