Date of Award

January 2016

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Gebisa Ejeta

Committee Member 1

Clifford F Weil

Committee Member 2

Rebecca W Doerge

Committee Member 3

Jeffrey J Volenec


Genetic improvement of sorghum (Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench) for drought tolerance and grain yield is challenging because of the complex nature of these traits. To make this process more tractable, studies were conducted to investigate the genetic architecture of these traits by employing a novel multi-parent advanced generation intercross (MAGIC) population. The population was formed from 19 founder lines through ten generations of random mating, aided by genetic male sterility (GMS) system. This was followed by seven cycles of self-pollination through single seed descent (SSD) to form 1000 MAGIC lines. Two hundred of these were genotyped using a high throughput genotyping-by-sequencing (GBS) platform.