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ARS Home » Midwest Area » Madison, Wisconsin » Vegetable Crops Research » Research » Research Project #413202


Location: Vegetable Crops Research

2008 Annual Report

1a. Objectives (from AD-416)
Objective 1: Acquire, conserve and distribute worldwide a broad diversity of potato genetic resources and associated information. Sub-objective 1.A. Strategically expand genebank holdings of potato cultivars, genetic stocks for anti-oxidants, tomatine glycoalkaloids, pigment and floral mutants, and wild relatives of potato from the southwestern United States. Sub-objective 1.B. Conserve more than 5,600 accessions of potato and its wild relatives by regenerating annually 100 seed populations, 900 in vitro clones, and 70 tuber families of potato and its wild relatives. Sub-objective 1.C. Distribute on request potato genetic resources and information that meet the specific needs of researchers and breeders, each year updating Web page and notices transmitted to e-mail list of cooperators. Objective 2: Strategically incorporate high-quality, comprehensive, priority phenotypic (evaluation) data for potato genetic resources into GRIN and/or other databases. Sub-objective 2.A. Incorporate into GRIN and/or other databases phenotypic (evaluation) data from cooperator’s (D. Spooner) literature review and other evaluation data which subsequently become available from published and unpublished sources. Sub-objective 2.B. Incorporate phenotypic (evaluation) data from “in-house” studies of vigor; late blight resistance; gibberellin mutants; and tuber anti-oxidants, acidity, calcium, potassium, and anti-cancer PCI into GRIN and/or other databases.

1b. Approach (from AD-416)
Access new germplasm as donations from other genebanks/programs, mutants selected in house, collection trips in the southwest USA. Propagation status and health will be monitored with a computer database. Botanical seed accessions will be propagated in virus-free green- and screenhouses. All new acquisitions will be quarantined until proven clean. Seed moisture and storage temperatures will be maintained at known optima, with confirming germination tests on each accession at least every five years. We will grow and intermate 20 parent plants of each seed increase accession to replenish inventory and/or germination. Germplasm orders and requests for information will be processed within one week of receipt. Engage in outreach activities to professional meetings and use webpage to assess distribution effectiveness. Identify pertinent publications, sift for evaluation data, and incorporate into GRIN. Summarize and format data from in house characterization projects. Publish results of novel evaluation studies in peer reviewed journals and present as talks or posters at professional society meetings as appropriate. Finally, advertise availabiilty to germplasm user group.

3. Progress Report
The Peer Review process for the Project has been certified by OSQR as complete. Start date of project is 5/9/2008. Availability of potato germplasm is important to the progress of basic research and breeding. The genebank at Sturgeon Bay, in cooperation with worldwide collaborators, continued filling this need by offering viable, disease free stocks in a timely manner, and evaluating and documenting valuable traits. NP301 Action Plan goals are to acquire, manage, safeguard, conserve, characterize, evaluate and distribute genetic resources and associated information. As detailed above, a unique and significant service is being provided by this project with respect to potato for all these mandates.

4. Accomplishments
1. Discovery of very long tuber dormancy. The potato industry and research would be advanced by better understanding and control of tuber dormancy. Most tubers sprout within 6 months of initiating storage, but we discovered populations of a wild species whose tubers remain viable, firm and unsprouted in refrigerated storage for eight years. These stocks will be valuable for the study of the genetics and physiology to tuber dormancy. The problem addressed is relevant to the NP 301 Action Plan, Component 1, Problem Statement 3B: Capitalizing on Untapped Genetic Diversity.

2. Meeting of the Technical Advisory Committee. The annual meeting of the genebank's technical advisors and administrative representatives was held in Cascade Locks, Oregon. Decisions were made on priorities for germplasm import and preservation. The problem was to organize the annual meeting of the technical and administrative leaders of the inter-regional project, which is the US Potato Genebank, thereby reporting on past accomplishments and making decisions that impact future directions of the program. This is relevant to the NP 301 Action Plan, Component 1, Problem Statement 1A: Efficiently and Effectively Manage Plant and Microbial Genetic Resources.

5. Significant Activities that Support Special Target Populations