Genomewide selection in oil palm: increasing selection gain per unit time and cost with small populations

Oil palm requires 19 years per cycle of phenotypic selection

C. K. Wong

2008

Key concepts

Scholarcy highlights

  • Oil palm requires 19 years per cycle of phenotypic selection
  • Markers significantly associated with the trait were used to calculate the marker scores in marker-assisted recurrent selection, whereas all markers were used to calculate the marker scores in genomewide selection
  • Responses to phenotypic selection and genomewide selection were consistently greater than the response to MARS
  • Cost per unit gain was 26–57% lower with genomewide selection than with phenotypic selection when markers cost US $1.50 per data point, and 35–65% lower when markers cost $0.15 per data point
  • We conclude that for a realistic yet relatively small population size of N = 50 in oil palm, genomewide selection is superior to MARS and phenotypic selection in terms of gain per unit cost and time
  • Our results should be generally applicable to other tree species that are characterized by long generation intervals, high costs of maintaining breeding plantations, and small population sizes in selection programs

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