The Plant Germplasm Preservation Research Unit (PGPRU) is an integral part of the USDA National Plant Germplasm System (NPGS) and is charged with improving current genebanking operations. PGPRU develops strategies and technologies to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of plant genebanks. Our research
• Conserves genetic diversity of plant populations, as well as genes
and specific genotypes in diverse germplasm forms (e.g., seeds,
plant cuttings, pollen).
• Develops techniques, especially cryopreservation in liquid
nitrogen, to keep germplasm alive and healthy.
• Invents new ways to predict and detect changes in health and
genetic integrity of preserved germplasm.
• Analyzes plant germplasm collections to find redundancies and gaps
• Combines habitat, provenance and genomic data to identify
accessions with hidden, valuable genes.
PGPRU shares our innovations globally, supporting a network of genebanks that collectively preserve genetic diversity for an ever changing world.