Evolving gene banks: improving diverse populations of crop and exotic germplasm with optimal contribution selection

Wallace Cowling, L. Li, Kadambot H.M. Siddique, Mark Henryon, P. Berg, R.G. Banks, B.P. Kinghorn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We simulated pre-breeding in evolving gene banks – populations of exotic and crop types undergoing optimal contribution selection for long-term genetic gain and management of population genetic diversity. The founder population
was based on crosses between elite crop varieties and exotic lines of field pea (Pisum sativum) from the primary genepool, and was subjected to 30 cycles of recurrent selection for an economic index composed of four traits with
low heritability: black spot resistance, flowering time and stem strength (measured on single plants), and grain yield (measured on whole plots). We compared a small population with low selection pressure, a large population with high selection pressure, and a large population with moderate selection pressure. Single seed descent was compared with S0-derived recurrent selection. Optimal contribution selection achieved higher index and lower population coancestry than truncation selection, which reached a plateau in index improvement after 40 years in the large population with high selection pressure. With optimal contribution selection, index doubled in 38 years in the small population with low selection pressure and 27–28 years in the large population with moderate selection pressure. Single seed descent increased the rate of improvement in index per cycle but also increased cycle time.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1927–1939
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Experimental Botany
Volume68
Issue number8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2017

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