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Pesquisa Agropecuária Brasileira

Print version ISSN 0100-204XOn-line version ISSN 1678-3921

Pesq. agropec. bras. vol.52 no.7 Brasília July 2017 


Agronomic performance of modern soybean cultivars in multi-environment trials

Desempenho agronômico de cultivares modernas de soja em ensaios multiambientes

Gilvani Matei(1) 

Giovani Benin(1) 

Leomar Guilherme Woyann(1) 

Samuel Cristian Dalló(1) 

Anderson Simionato Milioli(1) 

Andrei Daniel Zdziarski(1) 

(1)Universidade Tecnológica Federal do Paraná, Campus Pato Branco, Via do Conhecimento, Km 01, CEP 85503-390 Pato Branco, PR, Brazil. E-mail:,,,,,


The objective of this work was to evaluate the productive performance, and the adaptability and stability parameters of modern soybean (Glycine max) cultivars in multi-environment trials, as well as to identify the ideal genotypes for eight growing environments in Brazil. A randomized complete block experimental design was carried out, with three replicates, for the evaluation of 46 soybean cultivars in eight environments, in the microregions of adaptation 102, 201, and 202, in the 2014/2015 crop season. A complex genotype x environment interaction occurred, with changes in the ranking of genotypes among locations. The NA 5909 RG, M6410IPRO, NS 5959 IPRO, NS6823RR, M5917IPRO, NS 6767 RR, and 6563RSF IPRO cultivars showed the highest mean yields. The NA 5909 RG, NS6823RR, M6410IPRO, and NS 5959 IPRO cultivars showed high adaptability and stability and high grain yield, in the evaluated environments, and were ranked next to the ideal genotype for the analyzed environments. There are modern soybean cultivars, which are adapted, stable, and highly productive, for cultivation in the microregions 102, 201, and 202 for soybean crop adaptation in Brazil.

Index terms: Glycine max; adaptability and stability; genotype x environment interaction; GGE biplot; mixed models


O objetivo deste trabalho foi avaliar o desempenho produtivo, a adaptabilidade e a estabilidade de cultivares modernas de soja (Glycine max), em ensaios multiambientes, assim como identificar os genótipos ideais para oito ambientes de cultivo no Brasil. Utilizou-se um delineamento experimental de blocos ao acaso, com três repetições, para a avaliação de 46 cultivares em oito ambientes, nas microrregiões de adaptação 102, 201 e 202, na safra 2014/2015. Ocorreu interação genótipo x ambiente complexa, com alterações do ranqueamento de cultivares entre os locais. As cultivares NA 5909 RG, M6410IPRO, NS 5959 IPRO, NS6823RR, M5917IPRO, NS 6767 RR e 6563RSF IPRO apresentaram as maiores médias produtivas. As cultivares NA 5909 RG, NS6823RR, M6410IPRO e NS 5959 IPRO apresentaram elevada adaptabilidade e estabilidade e alta produtividade de grãos, nos ambientes avaliados, e posicionaram-se próximo do que seria considerado ideal para os ambientes analisados. Há cultivares modernas de soja adaptadas, estáveis e com elevada produtividade, para o cultivo nas microrregiões 102, 201 e 202 de adaptação da cultura da soja no Brasil.

Termos para indexação: Glycine max; adaptabilidade e estabilidade; interação genótipo x ambiente; GGE biplot; modelos mistos


Soybean [Glycine max (L.) Merr.] is one of the most important crops for the Brazilian economy. Its domestic production reached 96.2 Tg in the 2014/2015 crop season, with a mean yield of approximately 3,000 kg ha-1 (Conab, 2016).

Genotype × environment interaction (GEI) is one of the main challenges of soybean breeding programs for both the phases of cultivar selection and recommendation (Branquinho et al., 2014). GEI consists in differentiated genotypic expressions, in different growing environments, and it is responsible for reducing the association between phenotype and genotype, reducing genetic progress in breeding programs (Lopes et al., 2012).

Data from multi-environment trials are necessary to assess the presence of GEI, for the evaluation of yield, and genotype adaptability and stability. Adaptability is the ability of the genotype to respond predictably to environmental stimuli, and stability indicates the predictability of performance in different environments. Several methods for adaptability and stability analyses have been described in the literature, which differ according to the statistics - as the analysis of variance, nonparametric regression, multivariate analysis, and the mixed-model analysis -, and according to the parameters used. Methods based on mixed models enable the analysis of genotypes, as that of the random effect analysis; and the multivariate analysis has innovative solutions for the visualization of results.

The mixed-model methods, such as the restricted maximum likelihood/best linear unbiased prediction (REML/BLUP), enable the estimation of variance components and the prediction of genetic values free of environmental effects (Peixouto et al., 2016). The following methods may be used: the harmonic mean of genotypic values (HMGV), in order to infer mean and stability; the relative performance of predicted genotypic values (RPGV), to analyze the genotypic adaptability and the mean yield; and the harmonic mean of the relative performance of predicted genotypic values (HMRPGV), to identify highly-productive, adapted, and stable genotypes (Gomez et al., 2014; Costa et al., 2015; Spinelli et al., 2015). As mixed models rank the effects of genotypes as random, these methods provide estimates of stability and genotypic adaptability (Resende, 2004).

The use of multivariate statistics, using tools as the GGE biplots, enables summarizing data from a large dataset into a few principal components (PC) (Yan, 2015). Biplots assessing the mean, phenotypic stability, and ideal genotype enable the graphical representation of each cultivar performance, facilitating the selection of superior genotypes (Qin et al., 2015).

The simultaneous use of mixed models based on REML/BLUP and multivariate methods enables the exploration of different adaptability and stability concepts, thereby complementing the collected data, thus increasing the efficacy of the selection of superior genotypes (Andrade et al., 2016).

This study differs from other published ones on the parameters of soybean adaptability, stability, and yield performance because it combines the methods of mixed-models and GGE biplots, in order to assess cultivars widely grown in the Brazilian macroregions of adaptation 1 and 2.

The objective of this work was to evaluate the yield performance, and the adaptability and stability parameters of modern soybean cultivars, as well as to identify the ideal genotypes for eight growing environments in Brazil, in multi-environment trials.

Materials and Methods

Forty-six modern soybean cultivars, widely grown in the Brazilian soybean macroregions of adaptation 1 and 2, which were provided for cultivation from 2007 to 2013, were evaluated (Table 1). These cultivars were classified according to their maturity groups (MG) into: early, 4.8 to 5.7; medium, 5.8 to 6.2; and late, 6.3 to 7.3.

Table 1 Description of 46 soybean cultivars, maturity group, cycle, year of release, technology and releaser. 

Number Cultivar Maturity Group Cycle Year of release Technology Releaser
1 BMX Potência RR 6.7 Later 2007 RR GDM Genética
2 DMario 58i 5.5 Early 2007 RR GDM Genética
3 NK 7059 RR 6.2 Medium 2007 RR Syngenta
4 A 6411RG 6.4 Later 2008 RR Nidera
5 BMX Ativa RR 5.6 Early 2008 RR GDM Genética
6 BMX Energia RR 5.3 Early 2008 RR GDM Genética
7 NA 5909 RG 5.9 Medium 2008 RR Nidera
8 NS 4823 4.8 Early 2008 RR Nidera
9 BMX Turbo RR 5.8 Medium 2009 RR GDM Genética
10 NS 5858 5.8 Medium 2010 RR Nidera
11 NS 6262 6.2 Medium 2010 RR Nidera
12 SYN1059 RR 5.9 Medium 2010 RR Syngenta
13 NS 6767 RR 6.7 Later 2011 RR Nidera
14 TMG 7262RR 6.2 Medium 2011 RR TMG
15 NS 4901 4.9 Early 2012 RR Nidera
16 NS 5258 5.2 Early 2012 RR Nidera
17 NS 5290 5.2 Early 2012 RR Nidera
18 NS 5401 RR 5.4 Early 2012 RR Nidera
19 NS 6209 6.2 Medium 2012 RR Nidera
20 NS6121RR 6.1 Medium 2013 RR Nidera
21 NS6823RR 6.8 Later 2013 RR Nidera
22 M6210IPRO 6.2 Medium 2011 IPRO Monsoy
23 M6410IPRO 6.4 Later 2011 IPRO Monsoy
24 5958RSF IPRO 5.8 Medium 2012 IPRO GDM Genética
25 6458RSF IPRO 6 Medium 2012 IPRO GDM Genética
26 6563RSF IPRO 6.3 Later 2012 IPRO GDM Genética
27 AS 3570IPRO 5.7 Early 2012 IPRO Monsoy
28 AS 3610IPRO 6.1 Medium 2012 IPRO Monsoy
29 M5917IPRO 5.9 Medium 2012 IPRO Monsoy
30 NS 5000 IPRO 5 Early 2012 IPRO Nidera
31 NS 5106 IPRO 5.1 Early 2012 IPRO Nidera
32 NS 5151 IPRO 5.1 Early 2012 IPRO Nidera
33 NS 5445 IPRO 5.4 Early 2012 IPRO Nidera
34 NS 5959 IPRO 5.9 Medium 2012 IPRO Nidera
35 NS 6909 IPRO 6.9 Later 2012 IPRO Nidera
36 NS 7000 IPRO 7 Later 2012 IPRO Nidera
37 NS 7209 IPRO 7.2 Later 2012 IPRO Nidera
38 NS 7237 IPRO 7.2 Later 2012 IPRO Nidera
39 NS 7300 IPRO 7.3 Later 2012 IPRO Nidera
40 NS 7338 IPRO 7.3 Later 2012 IPRO Nidera
41 NS 5727 IPRO 5.7 Early 2013 IPRO Nidera
42 NS 6006 IPRO 6 Medium 2013 IPRO Nidera
43 NS6060IPRO 6 Medium 2013 IPRO Nidera
44 NS6700IPRO 6.7 Later 2013 IPRO Nidera
45 NS6906IPRO 6.9 Later 2013 IPRO Nidera
46 TMG2158IPRO 5.8 Medium 2013 IPRO TMG

The experiments were conducted in a randomized complete block design, with three replicates, in eight representative sites of the microregions of adaptation 102, 201, and 202, in the 2014/2015 crop season (Table 2). The sites were selected within microregion 201 and nearby regions with similar sowing season and climatic characteristics. This region has the highest soybean production in Southern Brazil. The experimental units consisted of four 5 m rows, spaced at 0.5 m between rows. The sowing density was 30 seed m-2, and base fertilization was performed using 7, 70, and 70 kg ha-1 of N, P2O5, and K2O, respectively. Mechanical sowing and harvesting were carried out. The evaluated trait was grain yield (GY, kg ha-1), in the two central rows of each plot (5 m2 useful area), with grain moisture corrected to 13% (wet basis). Crop managements were conducted according to the technical recommendations for soybean cultivation (Oliveira & Rosa, 2014).

Table 2 Identification of test locations in the states of Paraná (PR) and São Paulo (SP), Brazil, used to evaluate 46 soybean cultivars, in the 2014/2015 crop season(1)

Municipality, state(1) Macro-region(2) Micro-region(2) Latitude Longitude Altitude (m) Climate(3)
Cambé, PR 2 201 23°16'S 51°16'W 520 Cfa
CM, SP 2 201 22°44'S 50°23'W 440 Cwa
Corbélia, PR 2 201 24°47'S 53°18'W 650 Cfa
Mamborê, PR 2 201 24°19'S 52°31'W 715 Cfa
Palotina, PR 2 201 24°17'S 53°50'W 330 Cfa
Realeza, PR 1 102 25°46'S 53°31'W 520 Cfa
SJI, PR 2 202 23°25'S 52°17'W 560 Cfa
SMI, PR 2 201 25°20'S 54°14'W 290 Cfa

(1)CM, Cândido Mota municipality; SJI, São Jorge do Ivaí municipality; SMI, São Miguel do Iguaçu municipality. (2)Macroregion is determined by latitude (photoperiod/temperature) and rainfall; and microregions, within a same macroregion, differ by temperature (altitude) and soil type (Kaster & Farias, 2012). (3)The climate refers to Köppen climate classification.

Initially, variance components were evaluated using the REML, and mean components were obtained using the BLUP, with the Selegen statistical package (Resende, 2002). The models 21 (for the analysis of genetic parameters for each site) and 54 (for the combined analysis of sites) were used.

The analysis of variance was also performed to verify the presence of genotype × environment interactions. Subsequently, a cluster analysis of means was performed using the Scott-Knott test, at 5% probability, and the Genes statistical software package (Cruz, 2013). Yield means of each genotype, at each site, and for the set of sites, were also indicated.

Data on genetic effects (g), predicted genotypic values (u+g), and the gain of each genotype with the removal of the environmental component were also determined in the analysis, using the model 54 of the Selegen software package (Resende, 2002).

The new genotype mean was obtained with this gain, and ranking was performed using this new value. Furthermore, the mean genotypic value (u+g+gem) was obtained in the various environments; this indicated the average interaction with all evaluated environments (Resende, 2002). Using this model, the following parameters could also be obtained: genotypic stability using HMGV; genotypic adaptability and yield performance, using RPGV multiplied by the overall mean (OM) of all sites (RPGV*OM); and the genotypic stability and adaptability, and crop yiel performance, using HMRPGV*OM.

Stability was also assessed using the GGEbiplot software (Yan, 2001), which analyzes the stability of genotypes associated with their mean yield. For this purpose, the following parameters were used: data transformation (Transform = 0, without transformation), data scale (Scaling = 0, without scale), data centering (Data centering = 2, genotype plus genotype by environment interaction (G+GEI), and singular-value partitioning (SVP = 1, focus on genotype). The concept of ideal genotype was also evaluated with the GGEbiplot software (Yan, 2001), using the same parameters as those for the mean and stability analyses.

Results and Discussion

In the combined analysis, the estimation of heritability in the broad sense (h2 g) for grain yield (GY) was 0.37 (±0.05), which is lower than the estimate usually obtained for agronomic characters controlled by a few genes, but within the expected range for characters controlled by many genes of small effects, as GY (Table 3). Low values of h2 g indicate the need for a breakdown in the GEI because they result from changes in the behavior of the genotypes in the studied sites (Rosado et al., 2012). Interaction analysis allows the maximization of selection gains, when testing homozygous clones or lines. Similar results were obtained by other authors (Pinheiro et al., 2013; Rocha et al., 2015; Andrade et al., 2016), who also found low-heritability estimates for soybean GY. The value of interaction variance (VG×A), when higher than the genotypic variance (VG), also contributes to the low values of the h2 g estimates. In the individual analysis of the sites, h2 g was higher, ranging from 0.60 to 0.92, which indicates that a large part of the phenotypic variance (VF) resulted from VG. The value of standard deviation, at each site, was higher than that verified for the set of study environments, ranging from 0.19 to 0.23. However, these standard deviation values are within acceptable limits, which indicates that the predictions are reliable for use in breeding (Resende, 2004).

Tabela 3 Estimation of genetic parameters for each of the eight locations and of the set of locations for grain yield (GY) of 46 soybean cultivars. 

Parameter Location Parameter Mean of locations
Cambé, PR Corbélia, PR Mamborê, PR Palotina, PR Realeza, PR São Jorge do Ivaí, PR São Miguel do Iguaçu, PR Cândido Mota, SP VG 222102
VG 198089 771929 903687 370107 327417 276953 683526 586966 VGxA 292728
Ve 130764 105619 74431 69894 51372 117540 59123 87360 Ve 87014
VF 328853 877548 978118 440001 378790 394494 742649 674326 VF 601844
h2 g 0.60(±0.19) 0.88(±0.22) 0.92(±0.23) 0.84(±0.22) 0.86(±0.22) 0.70(±0.20) 0.92(±0.23) 0.87(±0.22) h2 g 0.37 (±0.05)
h2 mg 0.82 0.96 0.97 0.94 0.95 0.88 0.97 0.95 h2 mg 0.85
Acgen 0.91 0.98 0.99 0.97 0.97 0.94 0.99 0.98 Acgen 0.92
CVgi% 10.49 18.42 22.85 21.15 12.49 12.69 20.23 23.41 c2 int 0.49
CVe% 8.53 6.81 6.56 9.19 4.95 8.26 5.95 9.03 rgloc 0.43
PEV 35727 33671 24147 21918 16273 34324 19156 27744 CVgi% 11.73
SEP 189.01 183.50 155.39 148.05 127.57 185.27 138.40 166.56 CVe% 7.34
GY mean (kg ha-1) 4,242 4,770 4,160 2,876 4,582 4,148 4,087 3,273 General mean 4,017

VG, genotypic variance; VGxA, genotype x environment interaction variance; Ve, residual variance; VF, individual phenotypic variance. h2 g, heritability of individual plots of the total genotypic effects (in the broad sense); c2 int, coefficient of determination of the G x E interaction effects; h2 mg, heritability of the genotype mean; Acgen, accuracy of genotype selection; rgloc, genotypic correlation between perfomances in various environments; CVgi%, coefficient of genotypic variation; CVe%, coefficient of residual variation; PEV, variance of the prediction error of genotypic values; SEP, standard deviation of the predicted genotypic value.

The genotypic coefficient of variation (CVgi%) was 11.73% in the combined analysis of sites, and ranged from 10.49%, in the municipality of Cambé, in Paraná state, to 23.41%, in the municipality of Cândido Mota, in São Paulo state. Sites with higher CVgi% values favor the discrimination of genotypes, that is, they promote a wider performance range, favoring selection. The residual coefficient of variation (CVe%) ranged from 4.95% in the municipality of Realeza, to 9.19% in the municipality of Palotina, both in the state of Paraná. These values are considered low and indicate good experimental precision. Genotypic selection accuracy (Acgen) for the set of sites was 0.92, and ranged from 0.91 in Cambé to 0.99 in Mamborê and in São Miguel do Iguaçu, all municipalities in the state of Paraná, indicating the high experimental precision obtained in all study environments. This parameter involves correlating the true genotypic value of the genetic treatment with the genotypic value estimated, or predicted, from experimental data. These values may be classified within the very high-accuracy class (Acgen > 0.90) (Resende & Duarte, 2007).

The genotypic correlation between performances in the various environments (rgloc) was 0.43. This value indicates the occurrence of a complex interaction between genotypes and test sites, which entails different genotypic responses at the different sites where they are evaluated, changing the ranking between sites (Costa et al., 2015). Furthermore, this also indicates that sites in the same soybean microregion of adaptation show considerable differences for cultivar performance. This is the case with microregion 201 (macroregion 2). The sites Realeza, in microregion 102 (macroregion 1), and São Jorge do Ivaí, in microregion 202 (macroregion 2), both in the state of Paraná, showed crop yield performance similar to that assessed in microregion 201. Besides, large variations of performance were observed even in study sites with latitude variation smaller than 3°. Therefore, breeders should conduct several comparative trials of cultivars within the same subregion, in order to identify the specificity of each site where they intend to plant their cultivars.

The mean GY of the trials was 4,017 kg ha-1 (Table 4), which is higher than the mean of the Midwestern-Southern region of Brazil (3,016 kg ha-1), and higher than those of regions in Paraná (3,294 kg ha-1) and São Paulo (2,970 kg ha-1) states, according to Companhia Nacional de Abastecimento (Conab, 2016). The mean yields obtained in the trials for each site ranged from 2,876 kg ha-1, in Palotina, to 4,770 kg ha-1 in Corbélia, both in the state of Paraná.

Table 4 Grain yield (kg ha-1) of soybean cultivars, grouping means by the Scott-Knott test, and mean of cultivars in eight sites GY (XG), mean of each location (XL), and mean of 46 soybean cultivars classified according to their cycle, in each site, in the 2014/2015 crop season. 

Cultivar Locations
Cambé, PR Corbélia, PR Mamborê, PR Palotina, PR Realeza, PR São Jorge do Ivaí, PR São Miguel do Iguaçu, PR Cândido Mota, SP XG
BMX Potência RR 4151cB 6186 aA 4453bB 3072cD 4348cB 4706bB 3656dC 3859bC 4304c
DMario 58i 4241cB 4373dB 4804bA 2325eC 4623bA 3982cB 4580bA 2602dC 3941d
NK 7059 RR 4020cC 5813bA 3957cC 3579bD 4461bC 3955cC 5277aB 3364cD 4303c
A 6411RG 3495dB 4105eA 1174eD 2307eC 3997cA 2840eC 2286fC 2601dC 2851h
BMX Ativa RR 2770eB 3030fA 972eD 1743eC 3308dA 2525eB 2269fB 1653fC 2284i
BMX Energia RR 3624dB 4445dA 4850bA 2817dC 4953bA 4088cB 3580dB 3857bB 4027d
NA 5909 RG 4614bB 5557bA 5373aA 3240cC 5343aA 4808bB 5283aA 4588aB 4851a
NS 4823 3816cB 3129fC 3771cB 2251eD 5086aA 3635dB 2836eC 2463dD 3373g
BMX Turbo RR 4495bB 5108cB 5577aA 2445eE 5000bB 3928cC 4824bB 3202cD 4322c
NS 5858 3947cB 3548fB 3897cB 2242eC 4619bA 4301cA 4278cA 3437cB 3784e
NS 6262 4156cB 3938eB 4664bA 2230eD 4980bA 4195cB 3963cB 2726dC 3856e
SYN1059 RR 5099aA 4810cA 4475bB 2586dD 4749bA 4320cB 4278cB 3605cC 4240c
NS 6767 RR 4999aB 5886bA 4686bB 3673bD 4104cD 4447cC 4909bB 4011aD 4589a
TMG 7262RR 4441bB 5123cA 4800bB 2158eC 5315aA 4634bB 4288cB 2502dC 4158c
NS 4901 3911cB 4182eB 3915cB 2255eD 5090aA 4067cB 3943cB 2832dC 3774e
NS 5258 4299bB 4052eB 4035cB 2175eC 4678bA 4670bA 4181cB 3677bB 3971d
NS 5290 4446bA 4228eA 4478bA 2424eB 4586bA 4441cA 4109cA 2317eB 3879e
NS 5401 RR 4093cA 3161fB 4008cA 2474dC 4083cA 4081cA 4033cA 2638dC 3571f
NS 6209 4199cB 5167cA 5253aA 3122cC 3984cB 3969cB 3607dB 3767bB 4134c
NS6121RR 3906cB 5345cA 3958cB 2886dC 4247cB 4189cB 3186eC 2976dC 3836e
NS6823RR 4586bB 6097aA 4277cC 3923bC 4699bB 4675bB 4458cB 4437aB 4644a
M6210IPRO 4328bC 5605bA 4257cC 3777bC 4117cC 4794bB 4705bB 3889bC 4434b
M6410IPRO 4613bB 5711bA 4184cC 2920dD 4815bB 5453aA 5296aA 4645aB 4705a
5958RSF IPRO 4686bB 5402cA 4657bB 3107cD 4188cC 3947cC 4951bB 3499cD 4305c
6458RSF IPRO 4056cC 4753dB 4668bB 3103cD 5130aA 4373cB 4158cC 3905bC 4268c
6563RSF IPRO 5342aA 5539bA 4970bB 3253cD 4763bB 4029cC 4373cC 4358aC 4578a
AS 3570IPRO 4200cA 3874eA 4063cA 2243eC 3834cA 4140cA 3084eB 3526cA 3621f
AS 3610IPRO 4329bB 5175cA 4625bA 3303cC 4776bA 4068cB 4870bA 4149aB 4412b
M5917IPRO 4215cC 5430cA 4793bB 3368cD 4797bB 4864bB 4870bB 4379aC 4590a
NS 5000 IPRO 4216cB 3360fC 3853cC 2785dD 4861bA 3762dC 3637dC 2217eE 3586f
NS 5106 IPRO 4131cC 4051eC 3961cC 2567dD 5416aA 4807bB 4370cC 2436dD 3967d
NS 5151 IPRO 4043cB 4238eB 3879cB 2656dD 5443aA 4093cB 3805cB 3259cC 3927d
NS 5445 IPRO 3328dC 4004eB 4355cB 2125eD 5056aA 3776dB 3172eC 2602dD 3552f
NS 5959 IPRO 4765bC 5120cB 5532aA 2725dE 5668aA 4490bC 5124aB 3936bD 4670a
NS 6909 IPRO 4579bA 4654dA 4600bA 2521dC 4665bA 4617bA 3796cB 2122eC 3944d
NS 7000 IPRO 4360bC 5730bA 3411dD 3866bD 4527bC 4923bB 4151cC 4152aC 4390b
NS 7209 IPRO 4178cB 6080aA 3026dD 4494aB 3489dC 4320cB 4613bB 3792bC 4249c
NS 7237 IPRO 4077cB 4895cA 3663cC 3437cC 3399dC 4326cB 2281fD 3019dC 3637f
NS 7300 IPRO 4114cC 6087aA 3975cC 3340cD 3091dD 3592dD 4852bB 3366cD 4052d
NS 7338 IPRO 4098cB 4628dA 3729cC 3647bC 3936cC 3629dC 4177cB 2712dD 3819e
NS 5727 IPRO 4722bA 3885eB 4274cB 2678dD 5182aA 3062eC 3178eC 2539dD 3690f
NS 6006 IPRO 4643bA 4420dB 5103aA 2754dC 4870bA 3961cB 4691bA 2505dC 4118c
NS6060IPRO 3224dB 3575fB 1343eD 1948eC 4898bA 2997eB 2150fC 2098eC 2779h
NS6700IPRO 4395bA 4691dA 4091cA 3369cB 4396cA 4376cA 4258cA 4251aA 4228c
NS6906IPRO 3940cC 6265aA 4474bB 3983bC 4279cC 3968cC 4945bB 3827bC 4460b
TMG2158PRO 5231aA 4975cA 4513bB 2388eD 4946bA 4005cC 4664bB 2275eD 4124c

In the set of the evaluated environments, the highest yields were observed for NA 5909 RG, M6410IPRO, NS 5959 IPRO, NS6823RR, M5917IPRO, NS 6767 RR, and 6563RSF IPRO cultivars with 4,851, 4,705, 4,670, 4,644, 4,590, 4,589, and 4,578 kg ha-1 GY, respectively. The highest absolute production (6,265 kg ha-1) was obtained with the NS6906IPRO, in Corbélia, PR, however, it did not differ significantly from the BMX Potência RR, NS6823RR, NS 7300 IPRO, and NS 7209 IPRO in the same environment; this behavior was not repeated in the other sites. BMX Ativa RR showed the worse average performance in the set of study sites, with 2,284 kg ha-1 GY.

The strongest, positive genetic effects were obtained for NA 5909 RG, M6410IPRO, NS 5959 IPRO, and NS6823RR, which had therefore the highest genetic values free of interaction (μ+g) (Table 5). The highest negative effects were obtained for the BMX Ativa RR, NS6060IPRO, and A 6411RG, with genetic values far below the average. The new estimated means suggest that the genotype ranking remained similar to that obtained by the comparison of the fixed-model means, and that changes occurred in genotypes with intermediate ranking. Similarly, the predicted genotypic (μ+g) values and the mean genotypic values (μ+g+gem) showed the same classification between genotypes; this indicates that the recommendation - besides being the same - can be made by both parameters; this also makes it possible to recommend the cultivars for untested sites in the experimental network using (μ+g) values, as the genotypic performance is free of interactions in this case. A similar result was also reported by Borges et al. (2012).

Table 5 Genetic effects (g), predicted genotypic values (u+g), gain, new mean of the genotype, ranking of genotypes by the new mean (u+g+gem), mean genotypic value in the environments, and methods of adaptability and stability, using mixed models. 

Cultivar g u+g Gain New mean Rank u+g+gem HMGV RPGV *OM HMRPGV *OM
BMX Potência RR 242 4260 424 4441 14 4300 4155 4300 4254
DMario 58i -64 3953 247 4265 29 3942 3702 3904 3852
NK 7059 RR 242 4259 412 4429 15 4299 4178 4317 4260
A 6411RG -988 3029 57 4075 44 2867 2559 2866 2605
BMX Ativa RR -1468 2550 0 4017 46 2308 2056 2291 2111
BMX Energia RR 8 4025 295 4313 25 4027 3913 4042 3998
NA 5909 RG 706 4723 706 4723 1 4839 4718 4855 4829
NS 4823 -545 3472 81 4099 43 3382 3195 3363 3293
BMX Turbo RR 258 4276 454 4472 12 4318 4059 4278 4219
NS 5858 -198 3819 181 4198 35 3787 3631 3785 3736
NS 6262 -136 3881 214 4231 32 3859 3630 3823 3773
SYN1059 RR 189 4206 376 4394 18 4237 4073 4223 4203
NS 6767 RR 484 4502 557 4574 6 4582 4497 4615 4572
TMG 7262RR 119 4136 354 4371 20 4156 3795 4081 3992
NS 4901 -206 3812 170 4187 36 3778 3582 3745 3716
NS 5258 -39 3978 282 4300 26 3972 3780 3960 3908
NS 5290 -118 3900 225 4243 31 3880 3634 3841 3782
NS 5401 RR -378 3640 108 4126 41 3577 3445 3580 3533
NS 6209 98 4116 341 4359 21 4132 4028 4155 4104
NS6121RR -153 3864 203 4220 33 3839 3701 3830 3800
NS6823RR 531 4548 593 4610 4 4635 4572 4683 4634
M6210IPRO 353 4370 505 4522 9 4428 4366 4473 4427
M6410IPRO 582 4599 644 4661 2 4695 4529 4704 4646
5958RSF IPRO 243 4261 438 4455 13 4301 4179 4306 4279
6458RSF IPRO 212 4230 399 4417 15 4265 4178 4283 4266
6563RSF IPRO 475 4492 545 4562 7 4570 4460 4590 4555
AS 3570IPRO-(M 3570 IPRO) -336 3681 133 4150 39 3626 3493 3632 3586
AS 3610IPRO 334 4352 488 4505 10 4407 4332 4436 4412
M5917IPRO 484 4502 571 4588 5 4582 4501 4612 4585
NS 5000 IPRO -365 3652 121 4138 40 3592 3422 3585 3520
NS 5106 IPRO -42 3975 270 4288 27 3968 3721 3932 3862
NS 5151 IPRO -76 3941 237 4254 30 3928 3789 3918 3896
NS 5445 IPRO -394 3624 96 4114 42 3559 3337 3522 3466
NS 5959 IPRO 552 4570 613 4631 3 4661 4451 4639 4601
NS 6909 IPRO -62 3955 259 4276 28 3945 3648 3895 3809
NS 7000 IPRO 315 4333 472 4489 11 4385 4301 4436 4353
NS 7209 IPRO 196 4213 387 4405 17 4246 4113 4328 4130
NS 7237 IPRO -322 3695 145 4163 38 3642 3495 3681 3540
NS 7300 IPRO 30 4047 307 4325 24 4052 3895 4074 3956
NS 7338 IPRO -168 3850 192 4209 34 3822 3744 3858 3807
NS 5727 IPRO -277 3740 158 4175 37 3694 3492 3676 3597
NS 6006 IPRO 85 4103 319 4337 23 4117 3883 4087 4024
NS6060IPRO -1048 2969 33 4050 45 2796 2473 2764 2546
NS6700IPRO 179 4196 366 4383 19 4225 4187 4276 4243
NS6906IPRO 375 4392 524 4541 8 4454 4356 4496 4416
TMG2158IPRO 91 4108 330 4347 22 4123 3778 4059 3960

HMGV, harmonic mean of the genotypic values; RPGV*OM, relative performance of the predicted genotypic values multiplied by the overall mean of all environments; HMRPGV*OM, harmonic mean of the relative performance of the genotypic values multiplied by the overall mean of all environments.

The NA 5909 RG, NS6823RR, M6410IPRO, and M5917IPRO were the most stable cultivars and had the highest mean yield based on the HMGV method. BMX Ativa RR, NS6060IPRO, and A 6411RG were the most unstable and least productive cultivars. The genotypic stability analysis using that method is related to the dynamic concept of stability, associated with GY (Resende, 2004); thus, the lower is the standard deviation of the genotypic performance between sites, the higher is the HMGV. Therefore, selection by HMGV simultaneously leads to selection for both yield and stability (Resende & Duarte, 2007).

NA 5909 RG, NS6823RR, M6410IPRO, NS 6767 RR, M5917IPRO, and NS 5959 IPRO cultivars had the highest RPGV*OM values. Selection using RPGV*OM enables the identification of the most adapted genotypes by increasing the ability of each genotype to respond favorably to an improvement in the production environment. Furthermore, this parameter is associated with the mean yield, which enables the identification of both well-adapted and productive genotypes. This method can be compared with the one reported by Annicchiarico (1992), since it uses relative performance. However, these two methods differ for their measurement of adaptability, which is genotypically performed by the RPGV*OM and, phenotypically performed in the method of Annicchiarico (1992) (Carbonell et al., 2007).

NA 5909 RG, M6410IPRO, NS6823RR, and NS 5959 IPRO cultivars had the highest values, based on the HMRPGV*OM method, which indicates that they are simultaneously the most productive, stable, and adapted to the study sites. BMX Ativa RR, NS6060IPRO, and A 6411RG cultivars had the worst yield performances, adaptability, and stability. That method has the advantage of assessing the relative performance of genotypes in the genotypic context, unlike other widely used methods, as the methods by Lin & Binns (1988) and Annichiarico (1992), which consider the values in the phenotypic context (Borges et al., 2010).

In the total set of cultivars, NA 5909 RG, NS 5959 IPRO, and M6410IPRO had the highest mean yields, based on the GGE biplot method (Figure 1). The classification is done in relation to the single-arrow line indicating that the farther to the right it is, the higher the genotype average will be. AS 3570IPRO, NS 6209, 6563RSF IPRO, and NA 5909 RG were the most stable cultivars because they showed a small projection in relation to the two-arrow line. However, these genotypes respond poorly to environmental changes. AS 3570IPRO cultivar failed to show both a high stability and mean yield, failing to meet the breeding objectives. However, NA 5909 RG cultivar had adequate values for both characteristics.

Figure 1. Mean and stability for the set of 46 soybean cultivars (A), and for the cultivar division in early (B), medium (C) and late cycles (D), evaluated in eight locations - seven of which in the state of Paraná (Cambé, Corbélia, Mamborê, Palotina, Realeza, São Jorge do Ivaí, and São Miguel do Iguaçu), and one in the state of São Paulo (Cândido Mota) -, in the 2014/2015 crop season. Cultivars: BMX Potência RR (1), DMario 58i (2), NK 7059 RR (3), A 6411RG (4), BMX Ativa RR (5), BMX Energia RR (6), NA 5909 RG (7), NS 4823 (8), BMX Turbo RR (9), NS 5858 (10), NS 6262 (11), SYN1059 RR (12), NS 6767 RR (13), TMG 7262RR (14), NS 4901 (15), NS 5258 (16), NS 5290 (17), NS 5401 RR (18), NS 6209 (19), NS6121RR (20), NS6823RR (21), M6210IPRO (22), M6410IPRO (23), 5958RSF IPRO (24), 6458RSF IPRO (25), 6563RSF IPRO (26), AS 3570IPRO (27), AS 3610IPRO (28), M5917IPRO (29), NS 5000 IPRO (30), NS 5106 IPRO (31), NS 5151 IPRO (32), NS 5445 IPRO (33), NS 5959 IPRO (34), NS 6909 IPRO (35), NS 7000 IPRO (36), NS 7209 IPRO (37), NS 7237 IPRO (38), NS 7300 IPRO (39), NS 7338 IPRO (40), NS 5727 IPRO (41), NS 6006 IPRO (42), NS6060IPRO (43), NS6700IPRO (44), NS6906IPRO (45), and TMG2158IPRO (46). PC, principal component. 

Among the early cultivars, BMX Energia RR and DMario 58i had the highest mean yields, and NS 4901 was the most stable cultivar. Among the medium-cycle cultivars, NA 5909 RG, NS 5959 IPRO, and M5917IPRO were the most productive genotypes, and 5958RSF IPRO the most stable ones. Among the late-cycle cultivars, M6410IPRO had the best yield performance associated with high stability. Similarly, the NS 6767 RR and NS6823RR cultivars were also productive and stable. The A 6411RG, NS 7237 IPRO, and NS 7338 IPRO showed high stability; however, they had the worst yield performances. Stability is measured biologically by the GGE biplot method, that is, the genotype has a consistent performance among all the environments, but fails to respond to environmental improvements (Jamshidmoghaddam & Pourdad, 2013).

The ideal cultivar - the one closest to the center of the concentric circles - is based on high yield and stability criteria (Yan, 2015). Therefore, in the combined analysis, NA 5909 RG and M6410IPRO may be considered ideal cultivars (Figure 2). BMX Energia RR and DMario 58i stood out among all the early cultivars, and NA 5909 RG, which proved ideal, stood out among the medium-cycle cultivars. Among the late cultivars, M6410IPRO was the closest to the ideal cultivar. Identifying adapted and stable genotypes for a wide region enables breeders to use this source of germplasm towards developing new cultivars for adaptation to a wide range of environments.

Figure 2. Ideal genotype of the set of 46 soybean cultivars (A), and for the cultivar divisions in early (B), medium (C) and late cycles (D), evaluated in eight locations - seven of which in the state of Paraná (Cambé, Corbélia, Mamborê, Palotina, Realeza, São Jorge do Ivaí, and São Miguel do Iguaçu), and one in the state of São Paulo (Cândido Mota) -, in the 2014/2015 crop season. Cultivars: BMX Potência RR (1), DMario 58i (2), NK 7059 RR (3), A 6411RG (4), BMX Ativa RR (5), BMX Energia RR (6), NA 5909 RG (7), NS 4823 (8), BMX Turbo RR (9), NS 5858 (10), NS 6262 (11), SYN1059 RR (12), NS 6767 RR (13), TMG 7262RR (14), NS 4901 (15), NS 5258 (16), NS 5290 (17), NS 5401 RR (18), NS 6209 (19), NS6121RR (20), NS6823RR (21), M6210IPRO (22), M6410IPRO (23), 5958RSF IPRO (24), 6458RSF IPRO (25), 6563RSF IPRO (26), AS 3570IPRO (27), AS 3610IPRO (28), M5917IPRO (29), NS 5000 IPRO (30), NS 5106 IPRO (31), NS 5151 IPRO (32), NS 5445 IPRO (33), NS 5959 IPRO (34), NS 6909 IPRO (35), NS 7000 IPRO (36), NS 7209 IPRO (37), NS 7237 IPRO (38), NS 7300 IPRO (39), NS 7338 IPRO (40), NS 5727 IPRO (41), NS 6006 IPRO (42), NS6060IPRO (43), NS6700IPRO (44), NS6906IPRO (45), and TMG2158IPRO (46). PC, principal component. 

The methods to identify ideal genotypes via GGE, and stability via HMGV, coincided to show NA 5909 RG and M6410IPRO as superior cultivars. However, these two methods are not always coincident in the identification of adapted and stable genotypes. Yang et al. (2009) suggest that their simultaneous use is advantageous because these parameters consider the phenotype, when using GGE, and the genotype, when using mixed models. These methods also showed agreement regarding the cultivars with the worst performances, in which BMX Ativa RR, NS6060IPRO, and A 6411RG were the least stable and productive ones.


  1. NA 5909 RG, M6410IPRO, NS 5959 IPRO, NS6823RR, M5917IPRO, NS 6767 RR, and 6563RSF IPRO are the most productive cultivars in the study environments, and BMX Ativa RR shows the worst yield performance.

  2. NA 5909 RG, NS6823RR, M6410IPRO, and NS 5959 IPRO show high yield, adaptability, and stability, and may be considered ideal cultivars for cultivation in the study sites.

  3. There are modern soybean cultivars which are ideal for cultivation in the Brazilian soybean microregions of adaptation 102, 201, and 202.


To Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico (CNPq), for granting the overseas research and doctoral scholarship; and to Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Nível Superior (Capes), for granting the masters and doctoral scholarships


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Received: May 19, 2016; Accepted: September 29, 2016

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