|Del Rio, A|
Submitted to: American Journal of Potato Research
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/25/2002
Publication Date: N/A
Citation: N/A Interpretive Summary: Potato is an important world crop with an abundant diversity of wild relatives for research and breeding. Most of these species grow in nature throughout Latin America, but two species occur in the southwestern USA. This report summarizes 10 years of work with these populations: 1) We found, documented, and collected germplasm from the exact sites of over 100 populations so that others can use, collect or otherwise continue to study them. 2) We recorded our experiences and observations that might be helpful and provide clues to the life history of these plants, 3) We used these plants as models in a variety of studies examining how genetics in the wild compares to that in the US Potato Genebank, and how genetics of these materials may change when they are "captured" in a genebank, and review those findings here. All of this effort gives insight into the best ways to manage genetic resources in the potato genebank and in the wild. This eventually helps farmers and consumers, since it allows breeders to make more efficient use of genetic resources to breed new potato varieties faster and better.
Technical Abstract: Potato is an important world crop with an abundant diversity of wild relatives for research and breeding. Over 200 tuber-bearing Solanum relatives of the cultivated potato have been described from southern Chile to the southwest USA. Only five of these have been reported in the USA, and only two exist with certainty (S. fendleri and S. jamesii). This paper rreports three aspects of 12 expeditions by the authors to the southwest USA from 1992-2001: 1) locations and descriptions of populations collected in situ, and now preserved at the US Potato Genebank, 2) practical insights about collecting potato germplasm in this area. 3) review of research results using these stocks to date conducted at the US Potato Genebank, and a discussion of potential future work.