Seed Banks

  • Walter Hondelmann
Part of the NATO Conference Series book series (NATOCS, volume 1)


During recent years the occurrence of genetic erosion in the centres of diversity of cultivated plant species, as Professor Hawkes has pointed out in this volume, can be observed in an ever increasing and in part dangerous amount. On the other hand due to the work of plant breeding our crop plants are becoming more and more uniform. In other words, the genetic diversity or heterogeneity is decreasing to such an extent that genetic variability of our crop plants is in great danger. An impressive example (which also illuminates the agricultural significance of this phenomenon) is the fall of the maize yield in the USA in 1970 caused by the attack of Helminthosporium maydis (Southern corn blight). The overall average drop in yield was 15% and losses of up to 50% were recorded in individual areas. The almost exclusive use of the so-called “Texas Cytoplasm” in the hybrids gave rise to a degree of uniformity which made an epidemic of the disease possible.


Seed Bank Gene Bank Magnetic Tape Term Storage Gene Material 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. FAO. (1974). Meeting of Panel of Experts on Plant Exploration and Introduction. Rome.Google Scholar
  2. NASC. (1972). Genetic vulnerability of major crops. Washington D.C.Google Scholar
  3. ROBERTS, E.H. (1973). Loss of seed viability: chromosomal and genetical aspects. Seed Science and Technology 1: 515–527.Google Scholar
  4. ROBERTS, E.H. (1973). Predicting the storage life of seeds. Seed Science and Technology 1: 499–514.Google Scholar
  5. ROBERTS, E.H. (1975). Storage of wheat seed for genetic conservation. In IBPGR Symposium on wheat genetic resources. Leningrad.Google Scholar
  6. ROGERS, D.J. and HERSH, G.N. (1975). Genetic resources communication information documentation system GR/CIDS. In IBPGR Symposium on wheat genetic resources. Leningrad.Google Scholar
  7. SEIDEWITZ, L. (1973). Thesaurus for the International Standardization of Gene Bank Documentation, Parts I-IV. Braunschweig.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1976

Authors and Affiliations

  • Walter Hondelmann
    • 1
  1. 1.Agricultural Research CentreBraunschweigFederal German Republic

Personalised recommendations