2008 Annual Report
1a.Objectives (from AD-416)
1) Efficiently and effectively conserve and distribute a comprehensive assemblage of maize genetic stocks and associated information to maize researchers and breeders worldwide.
2) Strategically genotype and phenotype maize genetic stocks for priority traits, and incorporate genotypic and phenotypic data into MaizeGDB, GRIN, and/or other databases.
1b.Approach (from AD-416)
Our mission is to make natural and induced allelic and chromosomal variations available to the scientific community and to make information about the mutant collection available to researchers. The National Plant Germplasm System provides support to selected genetic stock centers having genetic resources of value to U.S. agricultural interests. The Maize Genetics Cooperation - Stock Center maintains important accessions of morphological and physiological markers, aneuploid material, translocations and inversions that are important tools in biological research. This project will increase the value of the stock collection as genetic tools and confirm the status of novel mutants discovered. Maize mutants have historically been used in gene discovery and will continue to be used in this way. New mapping tools in our collection will allow easier identification of genomic sequence underlying a phenotype. More recently, novel genes are being identified purely by sequence analyses. This will excel in the next few years with the release of the maize genome sequence. Identification of the functions for these newly identified genes can be determined by researchers with reverse genetics resources in our collection.
Since January, 26,191 seed samples were sent in response to 172 requests. Forty-three (43) requests were received from 18 foreign countries. Approximately 10 acres of nursery were grown this summer. We continue to grow a winter nursery of 0.5 acres at the Illinois Crop Improvement Association's facilities in Juana Díaz, Puerto Rico.
We have listed more stocks to our 'Phenotype Only' category of stocks. These are stocks that have been donated to the COOP over the years, and have been classified according to their mutant phenotype only. For the most part, these stocks have not as yet been allele tested. While we expect that most of these will represent new alleles of known loci, some will represent new loci. Over the past few years, some mutants in this class have been mapped and/or allele tested and where appropriate, the now characterized mutant stock was added to our main catalog. We are now listing all of these mutants to give cooperators that are interested in specific traits, easier access to these mutants. We have planted mutants that will be allele tested this summer. We are working on linkage stocks to refine the map position of Fcu alleles using visible kernel and seedling markers on Chromosome 2, and we continued a series of crosses to transposon tag Fcu using a transposed Ac lines. We are collecting and characterizing additional alleles of Fcu and other r1 aleurone color enhancers and inhibitors.
We have received 1,500 additional EMS lines from various inbred backgrounds from the Regulation of Inflorescence Architecture in Maize project. There are sufficient seed for all of these for distribution. We have also received an additional 21 lines from the Functional Genomics of Maize Chromatin project (see: https://www.fastlane.nsf.gov/servlet/showaward?award=0421619).
Our IT specialist has continued to make improvements to our curation tools, which are used to maintain data for our collection. These tools input our public stock data directly into MaizeGDB, to give maize scientists access to up-to-date information about our collection. We purchased a new server. New tools were developed to improve the efficiency of the input processes for pedigree information, and creation of forms required for planting and harvest information.
This progress report addresses NP301, Component 1 Plant and Microbial Genetic Resource Management. Problem statement 1A. Efficiently and Effectively Manage Plant and Microbial Genetic Resources and Problem statement 1B. . Assess the Systematic Relationships and Genetic Diversity of Crop Genetic Resources. The report also addresses Component 2 Crop Informatics, Genomics, and Genetic Analyses. Problem statement 2A. Genome Database Stewardship and Informatics Tool Development.
5.Significant Activities that Support Special Target Populations