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MB2 - Selection of Markers for Molecular Breeding

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Theresa Fulton
Cornell University

Martin Matute
Montana State University,
Dept of Plant Science and Plant Pathology

Deana Namuth-Covert
University of Nebraska-Lincoln,
Dept of Agronomy and Horticulture



Molecular Markers (variants of DNA sequences) are identifiers (or ‘tags’) of certain aspects of a phenotype and /or genotype which could be exploited by plant breeders for incorporating desirable traits into their advancing germplasm. It is important therefore that we understand the proper usage of markers, be able to select the proper marker types, have an understanding of DNA extraction protocols and the general organization of the crop genome of interest.

This lesson is written for plant breeders who are interested in or beginning to use molecular markers.


At the end of this lesson you will (be)

  1. Able to categorize marker types, describe the need for using molecular markers in plant breeding programs, and list the  desirable qualities of markers
  2. List  the common steps in  DNA extraction protocols required to produce sufficient quality and quantity of DNA
  3. Knowledgeable in the molecular or genetic aspects of markers to ensure their proper usage
  4. Gain understanding of the DNA structure, genome organization and the role and design of Primers in the PCR process.

This eLesson module ends with a summary and a quiz which randomly pulls questions from a quiz bank.  If you correctly answer 70% of the 10 quiz questions correctly, you will earn an electronic badge of completion which will be emailed to you directly.  You may retake the quiz, as you wish.  On average, it will take participants approximately 45-60 mins to complete this module including the quiz.

This eLesson was supported in part by XXXXXX, administered by XXXXX. Any opinions, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of XXXXXXX.


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