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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Raleigh, North Carolina » Soybean and Nitrogen Fixation Research » Research » Research Project #445592

Research Project: Yield Limitations of Soybean Varieties Under Drought: Identifying and Overcoming Weaknesses by Team Drought (Iowa State University)

Location: Soybean and Nitrogen Fixation Research

Project Number: 6070-21220-070-050-A
Project Type: Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Oct 1, 2023
End Date: Sep 30, 2024

1. Germplasm and cultivar development: a) Develop and release drought-resilient germplasm and high yielding varieties. b) Incorporate high oleic acid and high protein genes into elite drought-resilient breeding stock. 2. Gene discovery and genetic marker development: a) Identify and incorporate newly discovered drought tolerance genes (slow wilting and beneficial root traits) into high-yielding backgrounds. 3. Improve drought screening and selection.

Data collected in 2020 – 2022 will assist in parental selection from 450 PI line panel and from two RIL populations for crossing. Crosses from 2023 will be planted in winter nursery and initial selections made in the summer of 2024. Lines within breeding populations with drought tolerant background currently in testing will be advanced (15 F2 and 5 F4 populations 1324 F5 entries and 295 F6 entries as of Jan. 2023) and later generations will be screened for drought tolerance in 2-row plots in Muscatine, IA as well as screened for yield in IA locations. Lines from drought tolerant backgrounds will be screened for protein and oil content. High yielding lines with high protein and oil will be advanced. High oleic acid and high protein lines will be crossed with drought tolerant lines. Three replications of a panel of 450 PI lines across MG I – III were grown in IA drought nursery and screened for drought tolerance in 2020, 2021, and 2022. 850 Recombinant inbred lines were screened in multi state locations in KS in 2021 and in IA, KS, and NC in 2022. DNA was collected and extracted from 850 lines and parents of two RIL populations and genotyped via the 3K soybean array chip. At least one unique loci or 1 candidate gene will be reported from GWAS study of 450 PI lines as well as QTL study of two recombinant inbred line populations totaling 850 lines. Thermal, RGB, and multispectral imagery, hyperspectral reflectance, and visual data were collected on a panel of 450 PI lines in a drought nursery in IA in 2020, 2021, and 2022. Data analysis is currently in progress. We will identify the most efficient and cost effective methods for drought monitoring and screening in breeding pipeline reporting a drought phenotyping pipeline that can assimilate multiple data types to improve phenotyping soybean for drought stress severity. The highest performing phenotyping method will be utilized in drought screening nusery in 2024 in addition to harvest yield to improve phenotyping methods for both yield and drought tolerance.