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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Hilo, Hawaii » Daniel K. Inouye U.S. Pacific Basin Agricultural Research Center » Tropical Plant Genetic Resources and Disease Research » Research » Research Project #434288

Research Project: NEXTGEN Cassava Hawaii Initiative

Location: Tropical Plant Genetic Resources and Disease Research

Project Number: 2040-21000-017-013-R
Project Type: Reimbursable Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Apr 1, 2018
End Date: Mar 31, 2022

Cassava is an important staple crop in Africa. However, disease such as Cassava Mosaic Disease (CMD) and Cassava Brown Streak Disease (CBSD), are the primary limiting threats to cassava productivity in Africa. For breeding purposes, it is very difficult to bring in new germplasm from Latin America to Africa because almost all genotypes from Latin America are highly susceptible to CMD and cannot be grown to flowering stages for hybridization. Latin American countries will not permit introduction of African germplasm due to the danger of introducing the virus (although it is possible to produce virus free tissue cultures or true seed that does not have the viruses). Here we describe a project to help the University of Hawaii through the NEXTGEN Cassava Project, evaluate the potential to grow and breed select cassava varieties in Hawaii. This pilot study will determine if Hawaii could become an important resource for breeding new cassava varieties for Africa and assist in global food security.

Working with International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) in Africa, International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT) in Colombia through the NEXTGEN Cassava Breeding Phase 2 at Cornell University. Seeds and virus indexed cassava plants will be shipped to the University of Hawaii under a SMTA. ARS will assist the University of Hawaii in multiplying and maintaining the tissue culture material under a Controlled Import Permit (CIP) and have the material available for release once it is cleared through APHIS. ARS will assist with the disease survey to discover potential diseases in Hawaii and monitor the plantings for CMD and CBSD. ARS will also assist in the evaluation of different cassava genotypes and conduct research on synchronizing flowering in Hawaii for breeding purposes.