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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

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Research Project: Discovering the Desirable Alleles Contributing to the Lignocellulosic Biomass Traits in Saccharum Germplasm Collections for Energy Cane Impr

Location: Sugarcane Production Research

2013 Annual Report


1a.Objectives (from AD-416):
1. Identify a core collection of accessions from the World Collection of Sugarcane and Related Grasses that captures the greatest extent of phenotypic and molecular diversity.

2. Discover desirable alleles contributing to biomass composition in Saccharum spp through association analysis between allelic variability in candidate genes and lignocellulosic biomass components.

3. Characterize and select advanced energycane breeding lines assisted by associated markers for energy cane improvement.


1b.Approach (from AD-416):
The phenotypic and genotypic variation in the world collection of sugarcane and related grasses will be determined used to identify a core collection of accessions for association genetics and to identify genes and alleles important for breeding high biomass genoptypes.


3.Progress Report:

This research relates to inhouse objective 3: Identify alleles or genes that can be used in molecular marker-assisted selection to complement the conventional approach of sugarcane.

In 2012/2013 the major progress made by ARS in this Project was in identifying and planting a replicated core collection of 300 accessions from the World Collection of Sugarcane and Related Grasses in Miami, FL. Research on this core collection is ongoing with the long-term goal of identifying potential genetic sources of bioenergy. A major outcome during this period was that a drip irrigation system was installed that provides irrigation to 930 separate plants growing in containers. Measurements of plant height, SPAD, and leaf chlorophyll fluorescence have been taken on the replicated accessions in this core collection during this year. Progress was monitored by monthly conference calls among the three cooperating scientists in the project and by many informal phone calls and emails with the Principal Investigator at the University of Florida. In addition, an ARS Post Doc who was hired with these Project funds has submitted one manuscript to Agronomy Journal.


Last Modified: 11/23/2014
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