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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: Enhancing Cotton Germplasm, Improving Resistance to Cotton Leaf Curl Virus and Supporting Cotton Best Management Practices for Small Farmers

Location: Genomics and Bioinformatics Research Unit

2012 Annual Report


1a.Objectives (from AD-416):
ARS and the International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA, Syria) will cooperate to provide support and oversight for cotton research conducted within Pakistan. ICARDA will also facilitate programs in Pakistan to address the need for improved crop management practices for small farmers, and coordinate workshops and training opportunities for Pakistani researchers with ARS designated researchers.


1b.Approach (from AD-416):
ICARDA, Syria will provide the support and oversight for projects conducted within Pakistan by Pakistani researchers, including, but not limited to screening for CLCuV resistance, establishing an in situ collection of cotton germplasm, transferring new sources of resistance into adapted varieties, and establishing sentinel plots to monitor the CLCuV spread and change in Pakistan. ICARDA will facilitate programs initiated to address the need for improved crop management practices for small farmers, and coordinate workshops and training opportunities for Pakistani researchers.


3.Progress Report:

ICARDA is managing funds directed towards Pakistani institutes and has first line of oversight of productivity and expenditures of Pakistani institutes working on the U.S.A./Pakistani Cotton Enhancement Program that deals with Cotton Leaf Curl Virus (CLCuV) in Pakistan. Potential expenditures and productivity are then passed onto the ARS collaborator to assure their conformance to U.S.A. regulations.

Listing of Pakistani partner institutes with a short responsibility descriptor is provided: Virus screening - National Institute for Biotechnology and Genetic Engineering (NIBGE), Faisalabad; Punjab University, Lahore. Location for holding and multiplying germplasm in Pakistan for seed sent from U.S.A. germplasm collection - Central Cotton Research Institute Sakrand, Sakrand. Testing of U.S.A. germplasm collection for CLCuV resistance - Cotton Research Station, Vehari; NIBGE; Central Cotton Research Institute, Multan. Small farmers’ agronomic practices to reduce CLCuV pressure - National Agricultural Research Center, Islamabad; Punjab Extension Service. Transgenic approaches for resistance - NIBGE; Centre of Excellence in Molecular Biology, Lahore.

During the past year, a comprehensive international research program was implemented to combat Cotton Leaf Curl Virus (CLCuV) by developing resistant cotton lines and studying the virus itself. ICARDA established agreements for within country partners. The CLCuV strain found in Pakistan developed within the country and is the most virulent form known in the world. Germplasm from the USDA ARS Cotton Germplasm Collection is continuously being propagated and sent to Pakistan for screening to see if it carries any resistance. In 2011 over 500 accessions of wild relatives of cultivated cotton were sent to Pakistan and screened by four partner institutes. All were resistant to the virus. The result is surprising and may indicate that the diploid wild relatives to be a non-host for the virus versus carrying resistance. The overall goal here is to identify novel forms of resistance, genetically map the resistance to identify a DNA marker associated with resistance, and then integrate the resistant trait into cultivated cotton. If the diploid species are non-host it may mean a new approach for solving the problem could be attempted. In 2012, approximately 1,400 cotton accessions were sent to Pakistan for screening, material was sent to four partner institutes. This included upland cotton, additional wild species and introgression lines between upland cotton and a diploid. Sentential plots and random selections were established in Pakistan to trap new isolates of the virus for characterization and to establish protocols to see if new forms of the virus are evolving. DNA samples from the viral samples were sent to the USA for DNA analysis at the ARS partner institute.


Last Modified: 12/21/2014
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