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ARS Home » Midwest Area » Madison, Wisconsin » Vegetable Crops Research » Research » Research Project #438880

Research Project: VacciniumCAP: Enable Development of Blueberry and Cranberry Cultivars

Location: Vegetable Crops Research

Project Number: 5090-21220-004-020-R
Project Type: Reimbursable Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Oct 1, 2019
End Date: Aug 31, 2022

Objective:
Development of cranberry cultivars with improved fruit quality attributes.

Approach:
We will develop nuclear genome sequences for 10 cranberry cultivars and use them together with blueberry to create a Vacciium pan genome. We will then use the pan genome to create a set of markers that can be used to map traits in both blueberry and cranberry. Based on a recent survey of the industries, the most important traits to study, in both blueberry and cranberry, are fruit quality traits. We will use the universal Vaccinium markers to identify gene-quality trait associations. In cranberry, we will be specifically applying techniques to measure fruit firmness, internal structure and external structure for gene discovery analysis, and breeding in cranberry. Data will be gathered for the next three years from two cranberry half-sibling biparental populations in order to identify novel genes that influence these traits. We will conduct gene search analyses using a recently developed composite map from our lab. The map is considered the highest-density map in cranberry. Additionally, we will be working on a genome-wide study based on a diversity panel population. Based on the data, we will make selections to deliver cultivars for consumers. Finally, we will work with the cranberry industry and growers to transfer the knowledge and implement new data into breeding programs and eventually into cranberry products.