Prebreeding Using Wild Species for Genetic Enhancement of Grain Legumes at ICRISAT

Sharma, S (2017) Prebreeding Using Wild Species for Genetic Enhancement of Grain Legumes at ICRISAT. Crop Science, 57 (3). pp. 1132-1144. ISSN 0011-183X

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Like many other major crops, ICRISAT’s mandate grain legume crops have a narrow genetic base. The production and productivity of these crops is adversely affected by different biotic and abiotic stresses, and high levels of resistance or tolerance to these stresses are not available in the cultivated genepool. In contrast, wild species harbor many useful genes and have potential to thrive well under climatic extremities. However, utilization of these wild species for the genetic improvement of crop cultivars is hindered mainly due to ploidy level differences between cultivated and wild species, cross-incompatibility barriers, and linkage drag. Systematic prebreeding efforts involving wild species of Cicer, Cajanus, and Arachis as donors and popular well-adapted cultivars of chickpea (Cicer arietinum L.), pigeonpea [Cajanus cajan (L.) Millsp.], and groundnut (Arachis hypogea L.) as recipient parents, respectively, have led to the development of new genepools having good agronomic performance and higher frequency of useful genes and alleles introgressed from wild species. Evaluation of a few populations for biotic stresses and yield-related traits resulted in the identification of desirable introgression lines (ILs) that have been shared with NARS for use in breeding programs. Overall, prebreeding ensures continuous supply of novel and diverse genetic variability derived from wild species in readily usable form into the breeding pipelines to develop new climate-resilient cultivars with a broad genetic base.

Item Type: Article
Divisions: Research Program : Genetic Gains
CRP: CGIAR Research Program on Grain Legumes
Uncontrolled Keywords: Prebreeding, Grain Legumes, Genetic Enhancement, Groundnut, Chickpea, Pigeonpea, Crop improvement, Genetic resources, ICRISAT
Subjects: Mandate crops > Chickpea
Mandate crops > Pigeonpea
Mandate crops > Groundnut
Others > Germplasm
Others > Legume Crops
Depositing User: Mr Ramesh K
Date Deposited: 03 Jul 2017 10:50
Last Modified: 03 Jul 2017 10:50
Official URL:
Funders: Global Crop Diversity Trust (GCDT), Department of Science & Technology (DST), GOI, India and CRP Grain Legumes
Acknowledgement: The funding support from the Global Crop Diversity Trust (GCDT) to carry out prebreeding activities in pigeonpea, the Department of Science & Technology (DST), GOI, India for chickpea, and the CRP Grain Legumes for groundnut is duly acknowledged. Author also wish to thank three anonymous reviewers and the Associate Editor, Dr. Linghe Zeng, for their most useful comments and suggestions on this manuscript.
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