The Usefulness of Molecular Markers Approach for Developing Heterotic Groups in Maize

  • Willy B Suwarno Department of Agronomy and Horticulture Faculty of Horticulture Bogor Agricultural University Jl. Meranti Kampus IPB Dramaga, Bogor 16680, Indonesia


The phenomenon of heterosis provides a great
opportunity for plant breeders to gain greater
performance and yield in the hybrids compared to their
inbred line parents. In most cross-pollinated crops like
maize, heterosis plays an important role as the
performance of the hybrids is of a great value. Heterosis
gain much interest until recently and current studies still
attempt to elucidateone of these is utilizing molecular
markers to estimate genetic distances among inbred
lines followed by developing putative groups. In a wellde
ned heterotic group, between-groups mating are
expected to produce better hybrids than within-groups
mating. Some studies of marker-aided heterotic group
development resulted in functional heterotic groups;
while some other reported that the groups failed to
provide evidence of heterosis in the hybrids.
Considering the prediction of hybrids' performance will
depend on genetic background of inbred lines, and
markers technology are continuously improved, there is
still a good opportunity to obtain useful heterotic groups
for a particular breeding population.

Keywords: maize breeding, genetic distance, heterosis,
molecular markers.