Characterization and inheritance of dicamba resistance in a multiple-resistant waterhemp (Amaranthus tuberculatus) population from Illinois

Lucas K. Bobadilla, Darci A. Giacomini, Aaron G. Hager, Patrick J. Tranel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Waterhemp [Amaranthus tuberculatus (Moq.) Sauer] is one of the most troublesome agronomic weeds in the midwestern United States. The rapid evolution and selection of herbicide-resistance traits in A. tuberculatus is a major challenge in managing this species. An A. tuberculatus population, designated CHR, was identified in 2012 in Champaign County, IL, and previously characterized as resistant to herbicides from six site-of-action groups: 2,4-D (Group 4), acetolactate synthase inhibitors (Group 2), protoporphyrinogen oxidase inhibitors (Group 14), 4-hydroxyphenylpyruvate dioxygenase inhibitors (Group 27), photosystem II inhibitors (Group 5), and very-long-chain fatty-acid synthesis inhibitors (Group 15). Recently, ineffective control of CHR was observed in the field after dicamba application. Therefore, this research was initiated to confirm dicamba resistance, quantify the resistance level, and investigate its inheritance in CHR. Multiple field trials were conducted at the CHR location to confirm poor control with dicamba and compare dicamba treatments with other herbicides. Greenhouse trials were conducted to quantify the resistance level in CHR and confirm genetic inheritance of the resistance. In field trials, dicamba did not provide more than 65% control, while glyphosate and glufosinate provided at least 90% control. Multiple accessions were generated from controlled crosses and evaluated in greenhouse trials. Greenhouse dicamba dose-response experiments indicated a resistance level of 5- to 10-fold relative to a sensitive parental line. Dose-response experiments using F1 lines indicated that dicamba resistance was an incompletely dominant trait. Segregation analysis with F2 and backcross populations indicated that dicamba resistance had moderate heritability and was potentially a multigenic trait. Although dicamba resistance was predominantly inherited as a nuclear trait, minor maternal inheritance was not completely ruled out. To our knowledge, CHR is one of the first cases of dicamba resistance in A. tuberculatus. Further studies will focus on elucidating the genes involved in dicamba resistance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4-13
Number of pages10
JournalWeed Science
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 25 2022


  • Dose response
  • herbicide
  • segregation analysis
  • synthetic auxins

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Plant Science


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