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Genetics and molecular aspects of maize (Zea mays) drought stress tolerance

Author: Badicean Dumitru
Degree:doctor of biology
Speciality: 03.00.15 - Genetics
Scientific adviser: Anatol Jacotă (decedat)
doctor habilitat, professor, Institute of Genetics, Physiology and Plant Protection of the ASM
Scientific consultant: Nicolae Barbacar
doctor habilitat, professor, Institute of Genetics, Physiology and Plant Protection of the ASM
Scientific council:


The thesis was presented on the 22 January, 2009
Approved by NCAA on the 23 April, 2009


Adobe PDF document0.41 Mb / in romanian


CZU 577.2:633.15:632.112

Adobe PDF document 2.96 Mb / in romanian
124 pages


maize, drought stress, molecular markers, DNA fragments polimorphism, diferential expressed genes.


For the first time were performed complex physiological, genetic and molecular investigations of drought resistance of maize genotypes and were determined the genetic and molecular particularities of resistance phenomenon.

Was demonstrated that morpho-physiological genetic variability of investigates characters is stronger in stress conditions and could be used as drought tolerance index in maize genotypes characterization at the first stages of development.

Analyzed maize genotypes, with different drought stress tolerance, manifested a DNA fragments polymorphism associated with stress resistance and could be used in passportization of these genotypes, in elaboration of some molecular markers associated with stress resistance. Genetic dendrogram of analyzed maize genotypes revealed that clasters separation occurs in dependence of resistance level.

Was demonstrated that specific primers constructed on the basis of primary structure of heat shock gene (hsp70) allow an effective appreciation of maize genotypes resistance to temperature stress an could be used in selection and amelioration programs.

Gene differential expressed analyses revealed for non resistant genotypes a greater number of up-regulated genes in drought conditions in comparison with drought resistant genotypes. Approximately 53% of identified differentially expressed genes that are implicated in stress response are un-annotated, with unknown or hypothetical functions. For drought resistant genotypes differentially up-regulated genes in stress conditions could be used as potential molecular markers associated with drought resistance and tolerance for amelioration programs of maize.