Submitted to: Australian Journal of Agricultural Research
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 11/1/2002
Publication Date: 11/1/2002
Citation: QUISENBERRY, S.S., CLEMENT, S.L. CONSERVATION AND USE OF GLOBAL PLANT GENETIC RESOURCES FOR INSECT RESISTANCE.. AUSTRALIAN JOURNAL OF AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH. 2002. v. 53. p. 865-872.
Interpretive Summary: Food production increased significantly during the 20th Century as a result of land expansion for crop production and crop genetic improvements. With these genetic improvements, however, has come the replacement of traditional varieties and landraces with higher yielding, genetically uniform cultivars that require high production inputs. Genetically uniform cultivars often lack pest resistance genes, which has contributed to the vulnerability of crops to pests. Erosion of plant diversity also continues with destruction of world habitats and the neglect of germplasm resources and conservation efforts. Thus, conservation of global biodiversity is essential for food security and agricultural sustainability. This review by the Dean of the College of Agriculture, Montana State University, and a USDA, ARS Research Entomologist discusses the importance of global plant genetic resources for insect resistance by drawing upon examples of insect-resistant maize germplasm in collections maintained by the USDA, ARS North Central Regional Plant Introduction Station, Ames, Iowa, and the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center, Mexico. Examples of genes encoding insecticidal proteins from genetic resources are also provided. This is the first review to address the importance of maize genetic resources for insect resistance and the potential of molecular genetic technologies to facilitate the introgression of insect resistance genes from conserved germplasm into cultivated crops.
Technical Abstract: Insect and mite damage accounts for 30 to 70 percent of total crop production losses. Conservation and use of plant genetic resources are required to endow crops with pest resistance, as well as to enhance crop yields and nutritional qualities. Advancements in molecular genetic technologies have the potential to facilitate the introgression of insect resistance genes from conserved and un-adapted germplasm into cultivated crops. Long-term food security and the sustainability of agricultural productivity worldwide can be enhanced with the conservation and use of global plant genetic resources.