Page Banner

United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service


Location: Vegetable Crops Research

2010 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(D. Spooner) literature review and other evaluation data which subsequently become available from published and unpublished sources.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
Availability of potato germplasm is important to the progress of basic research and breeding. In 2010, the genebank at Sturgeon Bay, in cooperation with worldwide collaborators, continued filling this need by collecting and distributing (free of charge), viable and disease free stocks to all those who requested it, and evaluating and documenting valuable traits: Genebank staff collected in the Santa Catalina mountains in southeastern Arizona, sampling 15 new Solanum fendleri sites. Collaborative evaluation led to five publications using stocks collected by genebank staff in the USA, on these themes: anti-cancer proliferation factors, extreme tuber dormancy and very low tuber pH in Solanum jamesii, comparison of genetics from “easy” versus “remote” collecting sites, comparison of genetics from collecting tubers versus seeds. We multiplied 238 wild seed populations, performed 700 virus tests, 1003 germination tests, 20 ploidy determinations, and 25 tetrazolium seed viability tests. We organized more efficient screening by designing multiple uses for a single array of samples. Thus, tubers of some 400 cultivated stocks were generated for testing the appetite suppressant PI2, starch type, folate and thiamine, antioxidants and tomatine for anti-cancer, potassium, pH, and calcium in cooperation with various USA cooperators. Peruvian highland farmers also tested hybrids we made for frost hardiness. Over 13,000 units of germplasm were sent in 191 orders to clients in 33 states of the USA and in 26 orders to 11 other countries.

4. Accomplishments
1. New potato nutritional information. Diverse stocks kept at the genebank hold promise for improving nutritional value of potato. Screening of such stocks by ARS researchers at Sturgeon Bay found unique individuals in one species with high levels of tomatine, a natural anti-cancer compound. Other potato species were found to possess greatly increased levels of an appetite suppressant that could be very helpful in combating obesity.

Review Publications
Bamberg, J.B., Del Rio, A.H., Fernandez, C.J., Salas, A., Vega, S.E., Zorilla, C., Roca, W., Tay, D. 2010. Comparison of “Remote” Versus “Easy” In Situ Collection Locations for USA Wild Solanum (Potato) Germplasm. American Journal of Potato Research. 87:277-284.

Bamberg, J.B. 2010. Tuber Dormancy Lasting Eight Years in the Wild Potato Solanum Jamesii. American Journal of Potato Research. 87(2):226-228.

Bamberg, J.B., Kiszonas, A.M. 2010. Survey of Tuber pH Variation in Potato (Solanum) Species. American Journal of Potato Research. 87(2):167-176.

Last Modified: 06/23/2017
Footer Content Back to Top of Page