Glycoalkaloids are quantitatively inherited in Solanum, and in high concentrations they can be toxic to humans. The increased use of wild potato germplasm to improve the pest resistance, yield, and quality characteristics of cultivated potato may elevate or introduce new, more toxic glycoalkaloids into the cultivated gene pool. Therefore, it is important to increase our understanding of their inheritance, accumulation, and biosynthesis. Glycoalkaloids have two basic constituents - a glycosidic grouping and a steroid alkaloid skeleton. Steroid alkaloids are classified as solanidanes and spirosolanes, of which solanidine and solasodine are, respectively, representatives. RFLP-mapped, diploid, reciprocal backcross potato progenies involving the parents S. tuberosum and S. berthaultii, which produce solanidine and solasodine, respectively, were analyzed for segregation of the glycoalkaloids solanine, chaconine, solasodine and solamargine to identify quantitative trait loci (QTLs) for the production of the aglycones solanidine and solasodine. The F-1 clone M200-30 exhibited low to nondetectable levels of solasodine and solanidine, suggesting that expression was controlled by recessive genes. In a backcross to berthaultii (BCB) and backcross to tuberosum (BCT), several QTLs for the accumulation of solasodine and solanidine were identified. Three QTLs explaining approximately 20% of the variation in solasodine were identified in BCB on chromosomes 4, 6, and 12. Similarly, three QTLs were identified in BCT on chromosomes 4, 8 and 11, but these accounted for only 10% of the variation observed in solasodine accumulation. Two QTLs for solanidine were identified in BCT on chromosomes 1 and 4. The QTL located on chromosome 1 was highly significant, accounting for 17% and 22% of the variation in solanidine accumulation in 1994 and 1995, respectively. This same QTL was also detected in BCB. The QTLs detected in this study probably represent structural and/or regulatory genes controlling the accumulation of solasodine and solanidine. Results are discussed in the context of steroid alkaloid accumulation and biosynthesis.