Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: March 19, 2002
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: Oat is a multi-use crop that is produced for human food, animal feed, and industrial uses. The characteristics of oat can be altered by plant breeding or biotechnology to optimize the content of various constituents for the intended use. Protein, oil, beta-glucan, and antioxidants are examples of constituents that can be manipulated to provide improved cultivars for special uses. Research progress relating to each of these constituents is described. A workshop about genetic improvement of grain crops for functional foods, specialty feeds, and industrial uses identified a number of research needs. These were categorized under genomic tools, enhancement of health-beneficial properties, increased nutritive value for livestock, and enhancement for industrial uses. We need better genetic maps, stable molecular markers, inducible promoters, better transformation methods, and isogenic stocks. To enhance the health-beneficial properties, we need improved analytical tools, expanded databases, research to characterize genes and biochemical pathways, and new, superior cultivars. For livestock feed, we need improved feed efficiency, reduced need for additives, cultivars tailored for specific livestock, and cultivars that contain specific components. Industrial uses include processing for food ingredients, biofuels, chemical feedstocks, and bioremediation.