Leaf-feeding damage by first generation larvae of fall armyworm, Spodopter frugiperda (J. E. Smith) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae), and southwestern corn borer, Diatraea grandiosella Dyar (Lepidoptera: Crambidae), cause major economic losses each year in maize, Zea mays L. A previous study identified quantitative trait loci (QTL) contributing to reduced leaf-feeding damage by these insects in the maize line Mp704. This study was initiated to identify QTL and their interactions associated with first generation leaf-feeding damage by fall armyworm and southwestern corn borer. QTL associated with fall armyworm and southwestern corn borer resistance in resistant line Mp708 were identified and compared with Mp704. Multiple trait analysis (MTA) of both data sets was then used to identify the most important genetic regions affecting resistance to fall armyworm and southwestern corn borer leaf-feeding damage. Genetic models containing four and seven QTL explained southwestern corn borer and fall armyworm resistance, respectively, in Mp708. Key genomic regions on chromosomes 1, 5, 7, and 9 were identified by MTA in Mp704 and Mp708 that confer resistance to both fall armyworm and southwestern corn borer. QTL regions on chromosomes 1, 5, 7, and 9 contained resistance to both insects and were present in both resistant lines. These regions correspond with previously identified QTL related to resistance to other lepidopteran insects, suggesting that broad-spectrum resistance to leaf feeding is primarily controlled by only a few genetic regions in this germplasm.
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Vol. 100 • No. 4