Genetic stability of wood density in Pinus radiata D. Don plantation estate across Australia
Tree Genetics and Genomes: 2010 6:113-125
Gapare WJ, Matheson CA, Ivkovic M, Baltunis BS, Wu HX

Abstract
Genetic variation for wood quality traits and diameter growth for radiata pine (Pinus radiata D. Don) at age 20/21 years was estimated from eight trials in Australia. The traits studied were wood density, acoustic time-of-flight (an indirect measure of stiffness) and diameter at breast height (DBH). Wood density and DBH exhibited significant additive genetic variation whereas non-additive effects were not significantly different from zero. Time of flight was also not significantly different from zero for both additive and non-additive effects, respectively. Average single-site heritability estimates (±SE) for wood density and DBH were 0.38 ± 0.10 and 0.16 ± 0.08, respectively. Pooled-site heritability estimates for wood density and DBH were 0.38 ± 0.10 and 0.08 ± 0.10, respectively. For density, there was little evidence of genotype-by-environment interaction (GEI) across the eight trials at the additive level (type B additive genetic correlation; r BADD = 0.73 ± 0.08) and type B genetic correlation for full-sib families (r BFS = 0.64 ± 0.08). In contrast, the type B additive genetic correlation for DBH was lower, (r BADD = 0.51 ± 0.14), suggesting evidence of GEI. However, type B genetic correlation for full-sib families was moderate (0.63 ± 0.11) for DBH, suggesting that there may be some stable full-sib families. On the basis of the results of this study, GEI should be considered in order to optimise deployment of improved germplasm in Australia.

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