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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: Acquisition, Evaluation and Conversation of Temperate Forage Legume Genetic Resources Title: Chapter 2. Genetic Resources

Authors
item Boller, Beat - ART RESEARCH, SWITZERLAND
item Greene, Stephanie

Submitted to: Handbook of Plant Breeding
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: February 5, 2009
Publication Date: June 1, 2010
Repository URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10113/39380
Citation: Boller, B., S.L. Greene. 2010. Genetic Resources. p. 13-38. /In/ B. Boller, U.K. Posselt, F. Veronesi (ed.)Handbook of Plant Breeding- Vol. 5 Fodder and Amenity Grasses, Springer, NY.

Interpretive Summary: The book focuses on plant breeding of forage and amenity grasses. This chapter discusses the genetic resources important for breeding forages and grasses Conservation and use of germplasm held in situ and ex situ is explored. Guidelines are given for establishing and maintaining ex situ germplasm collections and for evaluating them in view of their utilization by breeders. A comprehensive overview of publicly accessible germplasm collections is followed by a discussion of strategies for breeders to utilize plant genetic resources. The potential of new molecular tools for the management and better utilization of germplasm collections is outlined.

Technical Abstract: In this chapter, four categories of plant genetic resources (PGR) are identified as important for breeding: Wild relatives, ecotypes, landraces, and cultivars. Fodder crops and amenity grasses differ from field crops in the relative importance of these categories, as well as in the relative importance of in situ vs. ex situ conservation. As they are less domesticated, a continuum of wild and naturalized forms of the cultivated species of fodder crops and amenity grasses exist as ecotypes in a great variety of permanent grasslands. The chapter reviews recent, partly molecular marker based literature pointing to criteria and strategies of collecting PGR in situ in grassland dominated regions. Guidelines are given for establishing and maintaining ex situ germplasm collections and for evaluating them in view of their utilization by breeders. A comprehensive overview of publicly accessible germplasm collections is followed by a discussion of strategies for breeders to utilize PGR, with a focus on the concept of core collections as a tool in finding the most appropriate PGR for a given objective. The potential of new molecular tools for the management and better utilization of PGR collections is shown. Pre-breeding strategies are presented to capitalize on the presence of unique alleles outside the breeding pool.

Last Modified: 12/18/2014
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