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ARS Home » Plains Area » Manhattan, Kansas » Center for Grain and Animal Health Research » Grain Quality and Structure Research » Research » Research Project #431225

Research Project: Development and Characterization of Sorghum with Improved End-use Quality

Location: Grain Quality and Structure Research

Project Number: 3020-43440-001-07-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Aug 1, 2016
End Date: Jul 31, 2019

The overall objective of this cooperative project is to evaluate the effect of heat and drought stress on both sorghum and wheat grain composition and chemistry. Research will address how periods of both heat and drought stress impact final grain composition as well as how abiotic stresses at specific time points during grain filling impact final grain composition and chemistry.

Sorghum lines known to have yellow pericarp or endosperm will be grown in Hays, Kansas and winter nurseries (Mexico or Puerto Rico). Samples will be harvested at maturity and analyzed for carotenoid content and composition as well as basic grain composition. GWAS analysis will be conducted to identify genetic markers for carotenoid levels. Samples found to be high in carotenoid content will be used for additional breeding with high starch lines to create new germplasm with improved grain composition for food, feed and fuel. In addition, selected diverse samples will be grown in Hays under dryland conditions to evaluate the effect of heat and drought stress on sorghum grain composition. Samples of mature grain will be collected and threshed. Collected material will be analyzed for overall grain composition as well as important end-use quality traits such as fermentable sugars, protein digestibility, phytonutrient levels etc. Samples will be evaluated for their ability to withstand changes to grain composition when exposed to drought stress.