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Phenotype does not equal genotype

Although a wild relative may appear not to have many desirable characteristics, we now know that there may be many hidden alleles that could effect the trait in the direction that we want. For example, genes for increasing yield can be found in a low-yielding plant (Eshed and Zamir 1995, Mallikarjuna Swamya and Sarla 2008). This is especially true for quantitative traits, which we will discuss later in the module.

In this example of a genome with 6 chromosomes, there are 2 genes (or QTL) (red) that are associated with high yield, but 4 (blue) that are associated with lower yield, so overall the individual may be a poor yielder. MAB techniques, such as those in the upcoming chapters, can help identify those genes with the positive effects.