Accurate Determination of Genotypic Variance of Cell Wall Characteristics of a Populus trichocarpa Pedigree Using High-Throughput Pyrolysis-Molecular Beam Mass Spectrometry

Anne Harmon-Ware, David Macaya-Sanz, Chanaka Abeyratne, Crissa Doeppke, Kathleen Halby, Gerald Tuskan, Brian Stanton, Stephen DiFazio, Mark Davis

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5 Scopus Citations

Abstract

Background: Pyrolysis-molecular beam mass spectrometry (py-MBMS) analysis of a pedigree of Populus trichocarpa was performed to study the phenotypic plasticity and heritability of lignin content and lignin monomer composition. Instrumental and microspatial environmental variability were observed in the spectral features and corrected to reveal underlying genetic variance of biomass composition. Results: Lignin-derived ions (including m/z 124, 154, 168, 194, 210 and others) were highly impacted by microspatial environmental variation which demonstrates phenotypic plasticity of lignin composition in Populus trichocarpa biomass. Broad-sense heritability of lignin composition after correcting for microspatial and instrumental variation was determined to be H2 = 0.56 based on py-MBMS ions known to derive from lignin. Heritability of lignin monomeric syringyl/guaiacyl ratio (S/G) was H2 = 0.81. Broad-sense heritability was also high (up to H2 = 0.79) for ions derived from other components of the biomass including phenolics (e.g., salicylates) and C5 sugars (e.g., xylose). Lignin and phenolic ion abundances were primarily driven by maternal effects, and paternal effects were either similar or stronger for the most heritable carbohydrate-derived ions. Conclusions: We have shown that many biopolymer-derived ions from py-MBMS show substantial phenotypic plasticity in response to microenvironmental variation in plantations. Nevertheless, broad-sense heritability for biomass composition can be quite high after correcting for spatial environmental variation. This work outlines the importance in accounting for instrumental and microspatial environmental variation in biomass composition data for applications in heritability measurements and genomic selection for breeding poplar for renewable fuels and materials.

Original languageAmerican English
Article number59
Number of pages15
JournalBiotechnology for Biofuels
Volume14
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021, The Author(s).

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/JA-2800-74879

Keywords

  • Biomass composition
  • Heritability
  • Phenotypic plasticity
  • Poplar
  • Pyrolysis-molecular beam mass spectrometry

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