2011 Annual Report
1a.Objectives (from AD-416)
Develop and apply marker assisted breeding in Rosaceae fruit crops more efficiently and rapidly.
1b.Approach (from AD-416)
We have organized a diverse team of researchers (genomicists, breeders, ag economists, and extension personnel)to: 1)increase the likelihood of new Rosaceae cultivar adoption, 2)integrate breeding and genomics resources by establishing a standardized statistical framework and breeding information management system, 3)establish sustainable infrastructure for an efficient MAB pipeline in Rosaceae including crop-specific SNP genome scan platforms for breeding-relevant germplasm, 4)implement the MAB pipeline to demonstrate application of efficient MAB schemes in U.S. breeding programs, and 5)enhance sustainability of cultivar development by training of current and future Rosaceae plant breeders and active engagement of industry stakeholders and the allied research community.
The rose family includes many economically important crops such as cherries, apples, peaches, pears, blackberries, raspberries and strawberries. Scientists from all over the country are participating in a cooperative research project looking at the qualities and traits of these fruit crops compared with the actual DNA sequences of these plants. They are working on a process called "marker assisted breeding" where certain locations on the DNA of the plant can be a reference for a desired trait. When scientists see these markers in the offspring from the traditional crossing efforts, they can select the young plants with the desireable traits and speed up the breeding process. The scientists are coordinating the efforts of these crops because they realize that the markers from cherries or peaches may be the same in strawberries or apples, or vice versa. The scientists can compare their results and everyone can benefit and be faster to develop new desirable crops.This project is related to the objectives of the related in-house project by evaluation of blackberries, raspberries, strawberries, and pears. Major accomplishments include comparing the DNA of peach, apple, and cherry to strawberry through a technique that uses a single base pair change in the DNA. The group have monthly conference calls with their executive committee and meet at society and other international meetings to give presentations of their results. Newsletters are posted and websites are managed that describe this project.