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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Geneva, New York » Plant Genetic Resources Unit (PGRU) » Research » Research Project #424541

Research Project: Management of Genetic Resources and Associated Information for Selected Vegetable Crops

Location: Plant Genetic Resources Unit (PGRU)

Project Number: 8060-21000-024-000-D
Project Type: In-House Appropriated

Start Date: Apr 15, 2013
End Date: Apr 14, 2018

1: Conserve, regenerate, back-up, and distribute genetic resources and associated information for tomatoes, vegetable Brassica crops, onions (bulb and bunching), other vegetables (celery, radish, winter squash, tomatillo), buckwheat and related wild species. 1.A. Conserve and distribute tomato, cole crop, bulb and bunching onion, and other specialty vegetable crop (celery, radish, asparagus, winter squash, and tomatillo, and buckwheat genetic resources. 1.B. Regenerate annually 190 seed accessions, 40 bulbs or tubers, etc. of tomato, onion, Brassica, Cucurbita, radish, tomatillo, asparagus, and buckwheat. Backup primary collections via duplicate seed samples and/or long-term cryopreservation. 1.C. Collaborate with Germplasm Resources Information Network GRIN-GLOBAL and appropriate public databases to ensure that genetic data associated with germplasm resources are accessible via cross-links or searches. 2: Elucidate geospatial patterns of genetic divergence, diversity, and adaptation in selected crops and related wild species and apply that knowledge to genetic resource acquisition, development of core subsets, and other curatorial operations. 2.A. Validate existing geospatial information available and generate, where possible, missing geospatial data using publicly available resources for the four species defined by the taxonomic revision of Lycopersicon peruvianum and tomatillo. 2.B. Apply geospatial data to elucidate patterns of genetic diversity, divergence, and adaptation for the four species resulting from the taxonomic revision of Lycopersicon peruvianum and tomatillo. Apply geospatial data analyses to test the taxonomic revision of Lycopersicon peruvianum. 3: Enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of genetic resource conservation and utilization for the preceding crops and wild relatives by genetically characterizing priority accessions and evaluating them for priority traits related to product quality, and human nutrition and health factors. 3.A. Develop and apply genetic markers for tomatoes, tomatillo, winter squash and onion. Construct bioinformatics pipelines to analyze high-throughput genetic marker data, and make these data available through GRIN-GLOBAL and/or other databases.

The objectives of this project will be met by a) improving availability of associated information for these crops and other specialty vegetable crops (celery, radish, asparagus, winter squash, and tomatillo) and their wild relatives, b) conserving and regenerating genetic resources of these taxa efficiently and effectively, and distributing samples worldwide, c) utilizing geospatial information to elucidate patterns of genetic diversity, divergence, and adaption and to confirm taxonomy, d) characterizing ("genotype") and evaluating ("phenotype") genetic resources of these taxa for genetic markers and priority traits related to product quality and human nutrition and health factors. In the next five years the major activities of the project will emphasize upgrading standards for viability and number of seed stored in the active and base collections. Characterization will be concentrated on quality components, including those beneficial to human nutrition and health. The primary link with users will be through the Crop Germplasm Committees that define crop priorities for collection and evaluation. This project will provide sources of genes and evaluation data to accelerate progress in improvement and diversifying the genetic background of vegetable crops to insure that US horticultural production remains globally competitive.