Aluminium ToleranceBioinformaticsBoron ToleranceChickpea GenomicsDrought ToleranceDrought Forward GeneticsDrought Reverse GeneticsFrost ToleranceGenome AnalysisHybrid wheatIron BiofortificationMetabolomics and ProteomicsNitrogen Use EfficiencyP and Zn Use EfficiencyPlant TransformationSalinity ToleranceStructural BiologyPublications
Farmers have long used selective plant breeding to improve crop yields and nutritional content. Now, perhaps more than ever, new cultivars of agriculturally relevant crops are needed for coping with widely varying climates, increases in world population, and diminishing natural resources.
Selective breeding programs can require decades of trial and error to arrive at desirable characteristics in a cultivar. However, such programs can be accelerated significantly through computational and experimental genomics.
ACPFG scientists apply information about genome composition, gene expression, and metabolic processes to arrive at descriptions of complex processes in plants. The fundamental insights can accelerate production of new cultivars that can cope with adverse environmental conditions with yields and nutritional content for increasing world populations. ACPFG focuses these efforts on crops such as wheat, barley, and rice.
Traditional selective breeding and genetic engineering approaches are based on trial and error. The lack of rationale can extend the time to develop a cultivar to ten years and more. This situation is improved in programs that utilize insights into gene expression and function, which are obtained from molecular level investigations of biochemical processes. What is more, insight into plant processes at a molecular level facilitates sharpened approaches toward producing viable cultivars.
In the process of developing robust cultivars, ACPFG scientists identify mechanisms of stress perception and corresponding receptors, key signal transduction pathways, and relevant protein structures and interactions.
Areas of keen interest to ACPFG involve processes associated with stress-related damage, adaptation to growing conditions, and nutritional content. These problems are approached through:
These approaches and others are then applied to deliver tangible industry outcomes, for example, in cereal varieties tailored to withstand hostile environments.