Diversity Arrays Technology (DArT) provides whole genome profiling for hundreds to thousands of polymorphic markers in a single assay using a high-throughput microarray platform. The presented work aimed to establish DArT genotyping for the genetically challenging genome of sugarcane. Due to the genome complexity of this sugar-producing crop of high economic importance, an application of DArT genotyping to this species required extensive testing and optimization.
Few association mapping studies have simultaneously accounted for population structure, genotype by environment interaction (GEI), and spatial variation. In this sugarcane association mapping study we tested models accounting for these factors and identified the impact that each model component had on the list of markers declared as being significantly associated with traits. About 480 genotypes were evaluated for cane yield and sugar content at three sites and scored with DArT markers. A mixed model was applied in analysis of the data to simultaneously account for the impacts of population structure, GEI, and spatial variation within a trial.