Bioscience in brief
What are intraspecific or F1 hybrids?
Maize F1 hybrids
What is hybrid vigour?
- F1 hybrids tend to be bigger, develop faster, and more fertile than either parent.
- Hybrid vigour depends on parents being different.
- Why? Hypotheses:
masking of undesirable recessive alleles
> (Alternate forms of genes) from one parent some combinations of alleles are especially
> Advantageous when paired in the offspring e.g. an heterozygous individual.
F1 hybrids are uniform in appearance and behaviour:
- F1 hybrids have hybrid vigour (makes crops more competitive with weeds)
- F1 hybrids are selected for high yields and for improved grain quality
- A particular F1 hybrid line can be selected for specific pest and disease resistances or for tolerance to stress (such as drought)
Plants in the field: Courtesy of Jun Cao, Schnable Lab, Iowa State University
Ears of corn: Courtesy of Ruth Swanson-Wagner, Schnable Lab, Iowa State University