Marker-assisted selection (MAS) is a complementary tool for conventional breeding where a molecular marker linked to a trait is indirectly selected. Many studies conducted have been able to identify and develop markers for traits such as disease and pest resistance and other abiotic stresses. Despite the availability of these markers, the technology has been extensively used in tomato breeding for the identification of some economic traits in particular disease resistance. In developed countries, MAS is utilized routinely in breeding programs, but this cannot be said for developing countries such as Africa. It is high time Africa as a continent looks at the importance of the technology and invests in it. In addition to MAS, other strategies such as marker-assisted backcrossing and recurrent selection have also been employed for breeding in tomato. The use of MAS in crop improvement will not only reduce the cost of developing new tomato varieties but will also increase the precision and efficiency of selection in the breeding program as well as lessen the number of years required to come up with a new crop variety.
Part of the book: Recent Advances in Tomato Breeding and Production