International Database for Barley Genes and Barley Genetic Stocks

BGS 76, Red lemma and pericarp 2, Pre2

BGN  48:77
Stock number: BGS 76
Locus name: Red lemma and pericarp 2
Locus symbol: Pre2

Previous nomenclature and gene symbolization:

Purple chaff color = P (1, 7).
Purple chaff color = P1 (12).
Purple pericarp = P (3, 13, 17).
Purple lemma = P (2).
Red pericarp = R (2).
Red pericarp 2 = Re2 (9, 14, 18).


Purple or reddish pigmentation of the lemma and pericarp is controlled by one dominant gene (1, 3). Two dominant complementary genes (Pre1 and Pre2) control purple or red pigmentation of the lemma, palea, and pericarp (2, 12, 19, 21). In some Chinese landraces and Bowman backcross-derived line BW648 (NGB 22213), the second gene required for expression of purple lemma and pericarp is probably a dominant allele at the Anthocyanin-less 1 (Ant1) locus (5, 15, 20).
Located in chromosome 2HL (2); Pre2.a is about 17.1 cM distal from the vrs1 (six-rowed spike 1) locus (2, 3, 4, 9, 12, 13, 18); Pre2.a is over 11.2 cM proximal from the ant2 (anthocyanin-less 2) locus (9, 10); Pre2.a is associated with SNP markers 1_0214 to 1_0876 (positions 150.96 to 161.08 cM) in 2H bins 10 to 11 of Bowman backcross-derived line BW648 (5); line BW648 also retained a donor parent segment in chromosome 7H overlapping the Ant1 locus (5, 15); Pre2.a mapped in 2HL between the SSR markers Bmag125 and GBMS244 and was about 5.1 cM distal from the vrs1 locus (11), in 2H bin 10 at about 680 Mb.


Purple or red coloration of the hull (chaff) and pericarp develops during the soft dough stage of grain fill, and fades as the grain matures. Anthocyanin pigments in an acid cell solution produce the red to violet color observed in the pericarp and lemma (2). Bowman and the Bowman backcross-derived line for Pre2.a, BW648, were similar for all agronomic and morphological traits expect kernel color (6). The Pre2.b gene is up-regulated in the purple-grained line (BW648, NGB 22213) with coordinately co-expressed flavonoid biosynthesis structural genes (Chs, Chi, F3h, Dfr, and Ans) (16). Compared to Bowman, the anthocyanin content of BW648 showed a value over nine times higher (16). A similar increase was observed in other studies (21).

Origin of mutant:

Natural occurrence in a few cultivars and some Hordeum vulgare subsp spontaneum accessions (2, 19, 20).

Mutational events:

Pre2.a in Buckley 3277 (NSL 32606, GSHO 234) (2).

Mutant used for description and seed stocks:

Pre2.a in Buckley 3277 (NSL 32606, GSHO 234); Pre2.b from R.I. Wolfe's Multiple Dominant Marker Stock (GSHO 1565) in Bowman (PI 483237, NGB 22812)*9 (GSHO 1926, BW648, NGB 22213).


1. Biffen, R.H. 1907. The hybridisation of barleys. J. Agric. Sci. 2:183-206.
2. Buckley, G.F.H. 1930. Inheritance in barley with special reference to the color of the caryopsis and lemma. Sci. Agric. 10:460-492.
3. Daane, A. 1931. Linkage relations in barley. Minn. Agric. Exp. Sta. Tech. Bull. 78. 30 p.
4. Doney, D.L. 1961. An inheritance and linkage study of barley with special emphasis on purple pigmentation of the auricle. M.S. Thesis. Utah State Univ., Logan.
5. Druka, A., J. Franckowiak, U. Lundqvist, N. Bonar, J. Alexander, K. Houston, S. Radovic, F. Shahinnia, V. Vendramin, M. Morgante, N. Stein, and R. Waugh. 2011. Genetic dissection of barley morphology and development. Plant Physiol. 155:617-627.
6. Franckowiak, J.D. (Unpublished).
7. Fraser, J.G.C. 1921. The dominant Mendelian characters in barley breeding. Sci. Agric. 2:113-116.
8. Gill, T.S. 1951. Inheritance of 16 barley characters and their linkage relationships. M.S. Thesis. Utah State Univ., Logan.
9. Heiner, R.E. 1958. Linkage and inheritance studies in barley. M.S. Thesis. Utah State Univ., Logan.
10. Imam, A.G.I. 1959. Inheritance and linkage studies in selected crosses of cultivated barley (Hordeum vulgare L.). M.S. Thesis. Utah State Univ., Logan.
11. Jia, Q., J. Zhu, J. Wang, J. Yang, and G. Zhang. 2015. Genetic mapping and molecular marker development for the gene Pre2 controlling purple grains in barley. Euphytica 208:215-223.
12. Miyake, K., and Y. Imai. 1922. [Genetic studies in barley. 1.] Bot. Mag., Tokyo 36:25-38. [In Japanese.]
13. Myler, J.L., and E.H. Stanford. 1942. Color inheritance in barley. J. Am. Soc. Agron. 34:427-436.
14. Robertson, D.W., G.A. Wiebe, and F.R. Immer. 1941. A summary of linkage studies in barley. J. Am. Soc. Agron. 33:47-64.
15. Shoeva, O.Y., T.V. Kukoeva, A. Börner, and E.K. Khlestkina. 2015. Barley Ant1 is a homolog of maize C1 and its product is part of the regulatory machinery governing anthocyanin synthesis in the leaf sheath. Plant Breed. 134:400-405.
16. Shoeva, O.Y., H.-P. Mock, T.V. Kukoeva, A. Börner, and E.K. Khlestkina. 2016. Regulation of the flavonoid biosynthesis pathway genes in purple and black grains of Hordeum vulgare. PloS ONE 11(10): e0163e782.
17. Ubisch, G. von. 1919. Beitrag zu einer Faktorenanalyse von Gerste. II. Z. Indukt. Abstammungs. Vererbungsl. 20:65-117.
18. Woodward, R.W. 1957. Linkages in barley. Agron. J. 49:28-32.
19. Woodward, R.W., and J.W. Thieret. 1953. A genetic study of complementary genes for purple lemma, palea and pericarp in barley (Hordeum vulgare L.). Agron. J. 45:182-185.
20. Yao, X., K. Wu, Y. Yao, Y. Bai, J. Ye, and D. Chi. 2018. Construction of a high-density genetic map: genotyping by sequencing (GBS) to map purple seed coat color (Psc) in hulless barley. Hereditas 155:37.
21. Zhang, X.-W., Q.-T. Jiang, Y.-M. Wei, and C. Liu. 2017. Inheritance analysis and mapping of quantitative trait loci (QTL) controlling individual anthocyanin compounds in purple barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) grains. PLoS ONE 12(8): e0183704.


J.D. Franckowiak. 1997. Barley Genetics Newsl. 26:113-114.


J.D. Franckowiak. 2014. Barley Genet. Newsl. 44:70-71.
J.D. Franckowiak. 2016. Barley Genet. Newsl. 46:53-54.
J.D. Franckowiak. 2018. Barley Genet. Newsl. 48:77-79.