Submitted to: Crop Science
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/1/2001
Publication Date: N/A
Interpretive Summary: The European corn borer is one of the most damaging insect pests of corn throughout the growing region of the United States and Canada. GEMS-0001 corn germplasm, resistant to damage caused by the European corn borer, was released by the United States Department of Agriculture in July 2000. GEMS-0001 is the result of a corn breeding program that was designed to combine resistance to European corn borer with yield potential. GEMS-0001 may reduce the need to use chemical pesticides to control this pest, thus, saving growers money, providing a safer product for the consumer, and reducing harm to the environment. GEMS-0001 resisted European corn borer feeding in an experiment that was designed to expose corn plants to a high number of damaging insects at Ames, IA and Stoneville, MS. GEMS-0001 also yielded well at five separate locations, thus, increasing its interest in being used in commercial breeding programs which will expedite its use by growers.
Technical Abstract: GEMS-0001 maize (Zea mays L.) Germplasm resistant to damage caused by the European corn borer [Ostrinia nubilalis (Hubner)] was released by the Agricultural Research Service, United States Department of Agriculture in July 2000. The European corn borer is one of the most damaging insect pests of corn grown in the United States. GEMS-0001 is derived from the cross, PI 503806 x B94. Breeding lines from PI 503806 x B94 were advanced by three generations of backcrossing to B94. Plants were artificially infested with the insect and selected plants were advanced in the breeding program. In 1998 Ames, Iowa trials, and in a duplicate trial conducted at Stoneville, Mississippi during 1999, GEMS-0001 had reduced leaf blade, leaf sheath, and collar feeding when compared to the recurrent parent B94. In addition to resistance to European corn borer, GEMS-0001 was also selected for its superior yield compared to other experimental lines in the resistance breeding program. One hundred sixty parents from the second generation backcross were tested for yield. Three plants from each parent, including the parent of GEMS-0001, were selfed and crossed to a private non-stiff stalk tester, LH 185, and the hybrid seed was grown in a five location yield trial using U.S. Corn Belt locations. One parent hybrid of GEMS-0001 yielded well at 9756.1 kg per hectare (155.6 bushels per acre) which was 95.3% of the highest yielding commercial check and 105.3% of the commercial check average. GEMS-0001 could provide an important source of resistance to this damaging pest of corn, greatly reducing the need for pesticide applications for control.