Durable broad-spectrum, adult-plant stem rust resistance in wheat conferred by the Sr2 gene has remained effective against Puccinia graminis f. sp tritici worldwide for more than 50 years. The Sr2 gene has been positioned on the physical map of wheat to the distal 25% portion of the short arm of chromosome 3B. Selection for this gene in wheat breeding programs within Australia has been performed so far through the use of the linked pseudo black chaff (PBC) phenotype and of the microsatellite markers Xgwm389 and Xgwm533 that flank the gene. The molecular markers flank a genetic interval of approximately 4 cM equating to a physical distance of over 10 Mbp. Recently, a 3B-specific BAC library was developed and a physical map established for this region. Analysis of the sequence of minimal tiling path-BAC clones within the region containing the Sr2 gene enabled the development of three new markers that were mapped within the Xgwm389-Xgwm533 genetic interval and tightly linked to the Sr2 gene. Screening a wide range of germplasm containing the Sr2 gene with these markers demonstrated their usefulness for marker-assisted selection in Australian wheat breeding programs.
BAC-derived markers for assaying the stem rust resistance gene, Sr2, in wheat breeding programs