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Molecular Markers for Improving Nutritional Quality of Crop Residues for Ruminants

Conference paper
Part of the Developments in Plant Breeding book series (DIPB, volume 10)

Abstract

Molecular biology combined with Mendelian and quantitative genetics in quantitative trait locus (QTL) mapping and marker-assisted selection (MAS), provides powerful new tools to facilitate efficient genetic manipulation by plant breeders of complex traits such as ruminant nutritional quality. The potential for using these methods to genetically manipulate the ruminant nutritional quality of pearl millet (Pennisetum glaucum (L.) R. Br.) stover is currently being explored in a pair of projects involving ICRISAT and ILRI scientists in India and collaborating labs in Australia and the UK. Initial results from these collaborative efforts are presented demonstrating availability of the genetic variation, phenotyping techniques, and molecular tools required for success. With continued funding of appropriate, targeted research, these tools will permit us to clearly demonstrate the potential for marker-facilitated mapping and manipulation of major genes that can contribute to enhanced ruminant nutritional quality of crop residues from dual-purpose cereals. Initial delivery to Indian farmers of new versions of currently popular high-yielding, high quality, disease resistant pearl millet hybrid cultivars, having genetically improved crop residue ruminant nutritional quality, could take as little as four to six years.

Key words

quantitative trait locus (QTL) mapping marker-assisted selection (MAS) ruminant nutritional quality stover pearl millet Pennisetum glaucum 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Genetic Resources and Enhancement ProgramInternational Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT)PatancheruIndia

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