VEGETOS: An International Journal of Plant ResearchOnline ISSN: 2229-4473
Print ISSN: 0970-4078

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Research Article, Vegetos Vol: 29 Issue: 2

Utilization of Exotic Plant Genetic Resources in Wheat Registered Germplasm

Vandana Tyagi*, Anjali Kak Koul, Anitha Pedapati and Pratibha Brahmi
ICAR-National Bureau of Plant Genetic Resources, New Delhi-110012, India
Corresponding author : Kaisa Raninen
ICAR-National Bureau of Plant Genetic Resources, New Delhi-110012, India
Tel: 91-11-25843697
Received: March 03, 2016 Accepted: May 12, 2016 Published: May 19, 2016
Citation: Tyagi V, Koul AK, Pedapati A, Brahmi P (2016) Utilization of Exotic Plant Genetic Resources in Wheat Registered Germplasm. Vegetos 29:2. doi: 10.5958/2229-4473.2016.00014.8


Utilization of Exotic Plant Genetic Resources in Wheat Registered Germplasm

Genetic Resources (PGRs) are material of plant origin which are of value for present and future generations of human kind. Since times immemorial these resources are being collected and conserved for further utilization in crop improvement programmes. Countries are highly interdependent on these genetic resources including the diversity rich nations where the major food production is dependent on crops which have actually originated in other countries. Thus, PGRs are continually exchanged for use in developing better crop varieties, resistant to various pests and diseases and to improve quality, quantity and other valuable or desirable traits. This unique germplasm is provided soft protection and registered at ICARNational Bureau of Plant Genetic Resources since 1996 through the Plant Germplam Registration Committee. An analysis on the extent of utilization of exotic germplasm in for developing trait specific unique germplasm was done. To start with the data was analysed for wheat germplasm registered from year 1996-2014, and it was found that 75% of the exotic germplasm was used as parents for the lines which were registered at ICAR-NBPGR.. .

Keywords: Exotic; Germplasm; NBPGR; Registered; Traits


Exotic; Germplasm; NBPGR; Registered; Traits


The exotic germplasm offered enormous opportunity for addressing the needs of the breeders/ researchers for developing varieties resistant to various pests and diseases and to improve quality, quantity and other value addition traits. It was the exotic germplasm that enabled wheat, maize, chilli, potato, tomato, cabbage, cauliflower, soybean, sunflower and many other crops to become major field crops in India. Introductions therefore, have played pivotal role in the establishment of large number of crops and development of improved varieties [1]. In the last decade of the 20th century, most obviously due to the trends of globalization and privatization, a paradigm policy shift was witnessed in the international policy environment and plant genetic resources regarded as “common heritage of humankind” became the “sovereign rights of a nation”. This major shift was due to adoption of Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) which came into force in 1993, during the Rio Earth Summit of the United Nations. The CBD reaffirmed national sovereignty over genetic resources and stressed that the authority to determine access to genetic resources rests with the national governments and is subject to national legislations. It provides for a bilateral approach to access/ exchange between countries on prior informed consent (PIC) and mutually agreed terms (MAT).
This regulation for access to germplasm under CBD was recognized by the parties to the CBD. With the objective of giving due credit to the scientists/developers of the unique/ promising research/experimental material including parents of inbred lines and to facilitate flow of germplasm among the scientists working in the crop improvement programmes, ICAR constituted Plant Germplasm Registration Committee (PGRC) in 1996. Deputy Director General (DDG), Crop Science is the Chairman of PGRC which is being held at regular intervals. Through PGRC, promising/ unique germplasm are reviewed/scrutinized for registration through an established procedures for which Guidelines have already been posted at NBPGR website. During the process of research and experimentation to develop improved varieties for specific or multiple traits, many useful materials are developed which may not qualify for notification and release as variety. Such material having resistance/tolerance to biotic and abiotic stresses, and other unique traits with academic, scientific and applied values may be registered through National Bureau of Plant Genetic Resources. Through this process the contributions of researchers who had developed/identified the trait-specific germplasm are recognized (NBPGR, 2014). The information on such registered germplasm is disseminated through publications in Journals, Technical bulletins/ Inventories or Newsletters from time to time.
In the current scenario the focus of national and international policies is on conservation and utilization of germplasm in order to meet future challenges. The aim of the present study was to analyse to what extent the exotic germplasm is being utilized for developing the unique / promising genotypes and it was observed that both all type of exotic introductions recent or old were used to develop these elite germplasm. Wheat is one of the most important food crop is providing one-fifth of the total calories for the world’s populations. More than 560, 000 wheat accessions are maintained in nearly 40 genebanks globally, however wheat breeding is currently restricted to limited sampling of the diversity [2].

Materials and Methods

To undertake the study on this aspect, the data available in the form of published inventories, technical bulletins were referred [1,3,4]. The data from year 1996 to year 2015 was considered only for wheat genotypes registered. Since 1996, XXXII meetings of PGRC have been held and a total of 1219 accessions have been registered in various crops.
The extent of use of exotic germplasm and derived benefits vary from crop to crop. Accurate information regarding the degree of usage of exotic germplasm in breeding programmes or in commercially released varieties of cultivated crops is difficult to obtain. Such estimates could be based upon pedigree information. Hence, the pedigree of the registered wheat germplasm was studied and the information on the national identity of the exotic accession that is exotic collection number (EC number) utilized in developing these genotypes were searched from the NBPGR website [5] accessible to all users.
For some genotypes, the EC numbers could not be traced but from philology [6], their exotic origin is confirmed. Few lines were registered as EC numbers itself [7].
The identity of the registered germplasm and the exotic genotype used in the pedigree of the registered genotype with the national identity number is given in Table 1 [8]. The data revealed that majority of the germplasm registered have utilized exotic lines as can be inferred from the pedigree provided in the Technical bulletins published by ICAR-NBPGR [9].
Table 1: Details of the genotypes utilized in registered germplasm at ICAR-NBPGR.

Results and Conclusion

From 1996-2014 a total of 156 accessions were registered in wheat, of which 110 (75%) accessions have exotic germplasm in their pedigree. This infers the impact of exotic germplasm utilization in developing promising genotypes in wheat. Similar type of study in other crop groups may be further taken to see the impact of the exotic germplasm utilization in crop improvement programmes.
A survey of pedigrees of trait specific wheat germplasm registered with NBPGR yield two conclusions one is that the trait specific germplasm are quite interrelated since a few lines like WL 711, C306 and Sonalika appear repeatedly. Only a few exotic germplasm accessions with extreme phenotypes for target traits tend to be chosen as parents in breeding programmes. The other is that exotic germplasm has played a prominent role in development of trait specific germplasm against the notion that exotic germplasm has not been utilized. Incorporation of exotic germplasm is the best means to enhance the genetic base of agriculturally important crops. The study thus depicts that introduced diverse germplasm is much used for crop improvement programmes and the lines which are used many a time in developing the trait specific germplasm and this information will help breeders/ researchers in identifying the germplasm of their choice (Figure 1). Indigenous lines developing these exotic germplasm as one of the parents in their pedigree need to be identified and published for the use of breeders/researchers through published literature and other reports. However repeated use of only few exotic germplasm lines can have serious consequences, narrow genetic base, slow response to selection reduced genetic variation and thus are vulnerable to abiotic and biotic stresses.
Figure 1: An estimate of various traits in registered germplasm.


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