Skip to main content
ARS Home » Southeast Area » Tifton, Georgia » Crop Genetics and Breeding Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #201685

Title: Genetic Variability, Rumen Digestibility and Fiber of a Forage Bermudagrass Core Collection

item Maas, Andrea
item Anderson, William - Bill

Submitted to: Plant and Animal Genome VX Conference Abstracts
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/15/2006
Publication Date: 1/14/2007
Citation: Maas, A.L., Anderson, W.F., Ozias-Akins, P. 2007. Genetic Variability, Rumen Digestibility and Fiber of a Forage Bermudagrass Core Collection. Proceedings of XV Plant and Animal Genome Conference, San Diego, CA, January 13-17, 2007. p. 143.

Interpretive Summary: not required

Technical Abstract: Bermudagrass (Cynodon sp.) is the most important warm-season grass forage for the South and could also be used as a bio-energy feedstock. In comparison tests over a six year period and three locations the bermudagrass biomass yields were as good as or better than switchgrass. Bermudagrass cultivars have been developed with high yield and high rumen digestibility; however, further improvements are needed. High digestibility appears to correlate with higher conversion to ethanol in preliminary evaluations. Identification of parents with differential genes that confer reduced recalcitrance to cell wall degradation will be necessary for breeding programs as well as the identification of candidate associative polymorphic bands for marker assisted selection (MAS). The genetic variability of a 168 entry forage bermudagrass core collection was assessed using amplified fragment-length polymorphisms (AFLP). The collection was also assessed for in vitro dry matter digestibility (IVDMD) and fiber components using neutral detergent fiber (NDF) and acid detergent fiber (ADF) techniques. Tremendous genetic and phenotypic variability was found within the core collection. Plant introductions with desirable traits for reduced recalcitrance were widely distributed throughout the genetic dendrogram. This indicates that multiple candidate parents and possibly genes are available for genetic improvement of forage bermudagrass.