Tuesday, 4 September 2012

Marker-assisted breeding to improve grain yield under drought

IRRI Seminar

By Arvind Kumar
Senior scientist
Plant Breeding, Genetics, and Biotechnology Division

1315-1415 H, Thursday, 6 September 2012
Havener Auditorium, IRRI

Seminar slides on Scribd


From 2004 onwards, IRRI conducted extensive research to make marker-assisted breeding (MAB) for increased yield under drought a reality.

Researchers initially worked to identify large-effect QTLs for grain yield under drought that show a consistent effect in the background of popular high-yielding varieties from South and Southeast Asia, as well as East Africa.

The approach for the identification and use of large-effect QTLs in rice was initially met with criticism from scientists working on other crops for which chromosomal regions with large effect on grain yield under drought have not been successfully detected.

IRRI’s drought breeding team has learned a lot from the progress with MAB for drought tolerance in other crops as well as in rice for other traits. These lessons have helped the team realign and combine the QTL identification and introgression of validated QTLs with consistent effect against the background of any popular high-yielding but drought-susceptible variety. Continued research over the last 7 years has led to the identification of six QTLs with consistent effect across different recipient varieties and environments, and across ecosystems. Such identified QTLs have been pyramided using advanced backcross-QTL and MAB approaches, which have facilitated the development of  improved breeding lines with higher yield under drought.

In the seminar, Arvind will discuss progress achieved with QTL identification and marker-assisted breeding for drought tolerance.

IRRI Seminars are a forum for invited IRRI staff and guests to present information and their opinions on topics relevant to international rice research and the work of IRRI. 

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