Sathguru Management Consultants
Kanan Vijayaraghavan, Venugopal Chintada, Rituparna Majumder, Richa Kapur, K. Aishwariya Varadan
South Asia has the highest "wheat dependent" low income community in the world. Stem rust and blast are recognized as the most damaging disease of wheat in the region producing 19% of the world's wheat. In order to combat the potential threat the national research centers were geared up to track the real time movement of wheat diseases, generate disease incidence data and create an enabling environment to boost wheat research in the region through streamlined efforts and enhanced SAARC tool box deployed six years ago.
Recent data (2016-17) from the tool box has shown a significant increase in the data records captured in this region compared to previous years. This has been possible because of heightened awareness amongst the scientists and with the continuous capacity building through pre-season and in-season surveillance trainings organized by Sathguru in collaboration with National Wheat Research Institutes at various levels.
The model is helping partner institutes to be self-sufficient for generating, maintaining wheat disease surveillance data in national and global databases and exchanging real time information with stakeholders. The application have been widely deployed and competently being used by 95% of rust surveillance teams in the wheat fields of SAARC region.
The study will focus on how national research center's judicious decision of carrying out diligent surveillance during the season contributed to safeguarding wheat crops in their respective nations through increased vigilance on emergence of new races and targeted introduction of regionally resistant varieties. Further using this data scientist's can aim to strategize their wheat research for identification of resistant varieties and eventually resulting in increased productivity addressing food security of the region.
The University of Sydney
Davinder Singh, Peter Dracatos
Following the introduction of wheat stripe rust into Australia in 1979, an uncharacterized resistance (YrA) was identified in both Australian and International spring wheats. Genetic analyses of YrA indicated it was a pair of complementary genes, which were mapped to chromosomes 3DL and 5BL and designated Yr73 and Yr74, respectively. While selection Avocet 'R' carries both genes, selection Avocet 'S' carries Yr73 only. P. triticina pathotype (pt.) 104-1,2,3,(6),(7),11 +Lr37 ("104-VPM"), first detected in Australia in 2002, most likely arose via mutation from pt. 104-1,2,3,(6),(7),11 ("104"), with added virulence for Lr37. Interestingly, while both pathotypes are avirulent on Lr13, 104-VPM shows a much lower Infection Type (IT, ";1") than pt. 104 ("X++3") on several genotypes carrying Lr13 (e.g.Avocet 'R', Avocet 'S'). Other Lr13 genotypes (e.g. cv. Hereward) respond similarly to both pts ("X++3"). Genetic analyses of 4 doubled haploid (DH) populations based on intercrosses between Avocet 'R' and genotypes lacking Lr13 segregated in a 1:7 ratio to pt. 104-VPM (";1" : all other ITs). Two populations fixed for Lr13 (viz. Hereward/ Avocet 'R' and Estica/Avocet 'R') segregated 1:3 to pt. 104-VPM (";1" : all other ITs). This segregation pattern fitted a model where two complementary genes interact with Lr13 to generate the low (IT ";1") IT. Mapping of a Teal/Avocet 'R' DH population using 92 lines and 9,035 DArT-Seq markers identified three QTLs: chromosome 2BS (Lr13); chromosome 3DL (co-located with Yr73); chromosome 1DS. These results suggest that Yr73 acts in a complementary manner with a gene on chromosome 1DS to confer leaf rust resistance (IT "X"), and that these complementary genes are additive with Lr13. It appears that Yr73 is a modifier of two independent genes in wheat, one conferring resistance to stripe rust (Yr74 on chromosome 5BL), and one conferring resistance to leaf rust (LrAv on chromosome 1DS).
Institute of Plant Biology and Biotechnology
Makpal Atishova, Aygul Madenova, Kanat Galymbek, Jenis Keyshilov, Hafiz Muminjanov, Alexey Morgounov
Wheat rust diseases are a major cause of yield losses of this crop. Yellow (Puccinia striiformis f. sp. tritici) rust is of the most widespread and dangerous disease of wheat and is the major factor that adversely affects wheat yield and quality. The use of genetic host resistance is the most effective, economical and environmentally safe method of controlling stripe rust that allows elimination of fungicides and minimize crop losses from this disease. Due to the threat of the development of epiphytoties of rust disease it is necessary to identify new donors of resistance to yellow rust and to develop resistant wheat breeding material. In the present study, attention was drawn to the effective yellow rust resistance genes Yr5, Yr10 and Yr15, which were identified in the process of molecular screening of wheat germplasm. Genetic analysis using S23M41 molecular marker linked to Yr5 revealed the presence of this gene in 17 out of 136 promising lines. Thirteen genotypes screened with Xbarc8 generated the DNA fragment associated with Yr15. Three advanced lines with Yr10 were identified using the SCAR marker. Three lines carrying two Yr genes (Yr5 and Yr15) were detected. Combination of Yr5 and Yr10 were found in 15 wheat lines. We identified a number of wheat genotypes highly resistant to stripe rust, which could be further evaluated to release new resistant varieties or to be used in the breeding program.
Sathguru Management Consultants
Venugopal Chintada, Vijay Paranjape, Mansi Naithani, Aishwarya Vardhan
Nepal is an important wheat producer country in the South Asian region; with wheat being the third most important crop in the country after paddy (rice) and maize. Additionally, high-quality, disease free, processed seed is vital to establishing food security in South Asia. The Agriculture and Forestry University or AFU, located in the fertile Chitwan region of Nepal, is the only agriculture university catering to the needs of the Terai region and has the capability to provide innovative wheat seed solutions for small wheat-growing farmers. In the Delivering Genetic Gain Project or DGGW, the AFU has an active involvement in seed production, processing, and distribution. These activities play a major role in human capacity building in the country involving women empowerment, whole family participation in varietal selection and entrepreneurship for sustainable livelihood and overall development. Currently, under the DGGW?s Innovative Seed System in Nepal, AFU produces and aggregates seeds from farmers in the area and process it through a new seed processing unit, which is a cost-efficient version of machines commonly seen in larger agricultural facilities. At full capacity, the unit can operate up to 18 hours a day and process one ton of seed per hour. The unit it is also capable of processing rice and maize during other cropping seasons. By March 2017, more than 200 farmers applied to be part of the inaugural cohort of farmers trained in producing disease free wheat seed. The inaugural wheat season for the Seed Systems for Nepal Initiative has concluded successfully, with a total of 14 metric tons of disease-free wheat seed processed. The DGGW Seeds Systems for Nepal Initiative envisions to increase the number of empowered farmers next season, which commences on November, 2017.
James Winans, Julian Garcia, Kellie Damann, Gary Bergstrom
In addition to causing Fusarium head blight of wheat and other cereals, Fusarium graminearum is associated with dozens of wild or weedy grass species. Their role in the disease cycle and evolution of the pathogen has not been established despite their widespread distribution. A three-year survey of wild grasses in New York (USA) found that inflorescences and overwintered stems were frequently colonized by F. graminearum. Through a series of controlled laboratory experiments, wheat and five common grass species were compared for their potential to support inoculum production. Artificially infested stem tissue from several grasses both retained F. graminearum at higher rates through a single winter and supported greater ascospore production per dry gram than wheat. Susceptibility of these species to root and crown rot was measured with a modified seed germination assay and a diverse panel of F. graminearum isolates. Differences were seen between host species, and some grasses were resistant to infection. Our results indicate that wild grass species may support significant F. graminearum inoculum production while differing in their suitability for root and crown colonization. Studying interactions between F. graminearum and alternative host plants can improve our understanding of evolution in a broad host range pathogen and our ability to predict the risk of crop epidemics. We are currently evaluating isolates collected from wild grasses for mycotoxin production and aggressiveness on wheat.
Ahi Evran University, Agriculture Faculty, Plant Protection Department K?rsehir/Turkey
Nilofer Akci, Marta da Silva Lopes
Stem rust (Puccinia graminis f. sp. tritici) is a fungal disease that can significantly reduce wheat yields and quality. The goal of this study was to screen 281 winter bread wheat landraces genotypes for their reaction to stem rust disease in seedling and adult plant stage.
For seedling stage, the experiment was carried out under greenhouse conditions in Field Crops Central Research Institute in Ankara, Turkey during 2017 growing season. The genotypes were grown at 20?4?C under greenhouse condition and inoculated (avirulent on Sr24, 26, 27, and 31 resistance genes) with urediniospores in mineral oil suspension at Zadoks growth stage 11 or 12. After inoculation, the genotypes were incubated at 20?1?C with 100% humidity during 24 hours then at 18-25?C. Scoring took place after 14 days using a 0-4 scale. Infection types on the susceptible checks (cv. Gun-91 and Thatcher) were 3+ scores. For adult plant reactions, the genotypes were screened under natural epidemic conditions for Pgt (virulent on Sr5, 6, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9b, 9g, 10, 30, Tmp and Mcn resistance genes) in Seydiler-Kastamonu, Turkey. The materials were sown in a one-meter row with three replications. Stem rust development on each entry was scored using the modified Cobb scale (Little Club had reached 80-100S) in August 2017. Coefficients of infections were calculated and values below 20 were considered to be resistant.
Two (1%) (Seedling stage) genotypes and 15 (5%) (Adult stage) genotypes were resistant to Pgt. The resistance genotypes identified in this study can be used in breeding programs. SNP markers will be identified for stem rusts resistance identified in the landrace population.
National Institute of Agricultural Research
Nsarellah Nasserlhaq, Wuletaw Tadesse, Ahmed Birouk
In the context of climate change, drought is one of the most important and complex abiotic stresses affecting crop production worldwide. The adoption of an appropriate technological package, principally drought tolerant varieties, may overcome these challenges to meet global food security needs for the rapidly growing human population, particularly in developing countries. Therefore, this research was carried out to identify efficient phenotypic and genetic selection criteria to identify drought tolerant wheat varieties. In this perspective, 200 diverse elite bread wheat lines from ICARDA and CIMMYT were evaluated under four Moroccan environments during the 2015 and 2016 seasons for yield and 15 agro-physiological traits. The same set of genotypes was genotyped using 15k SNPs. Significant environment and genotype environment interaction effects were observed for yield. Average yield reached 3.18t/ha and ranged from 2.45 to 4.27t/ha. The secondary traits were mostly dominated by the environment effect (p<0.001). Based on correlation and regression analysis between grain yield and phenotypic data, the biomass, grain number per m<sup>2</sup> and to a lesser extent fertile spikes number and thousand kernel weights (depending of drought scenarios) can be more reliable traits than yield for the identification of drought tolerant genotypes. Moreover, the ground cover and canopy temperature depression can be used as supplementary criteria for more accurate selection. Slow selection on the basis of phenotypic traits may be accelerated and improved by using molecular markers. The genetic analysis highlighted significant SNPs and identified new QTLs linked to yield and the most efficient phenotypic traits under drought conditions. These findings could be useful for breeding drought-resistant wheat cultivars using marker-assisted selection to accumulate these favorable alleles of SNPs associated with yield-related traits to increase grain yield.
Nepal Agriculture Research Council, Nepal
Dipendra Pokharel, Thakur Prasad Tiwari, Mahesh Gathala, Hari Krishna Shrestha
Conservation agricultural practices have been found to be climate and labor smart, and sustainable, agricultural production technologies. The decline in productivity, increase in the cost of cultivation, labor intensive practice affected the cereal based farming system in Nepal particularly at the Indo-Gangetic plains. SRFSI has been working in response to concerns about the sustainability of the cereal based farming system at Sunsari and Dhanusha district of Nepal. This study was conducted to assess the adoption and scaling up of conservation agriculture in addition to input usage, production, net profit, B:C ratio, labour use, etc. of CA practice in Sunsari district, eastern Indo-Gangetic plains of Nepal. The study employed structured questionnaires survey and key informant survey as the main data collection tools. Project reports were taken as secondary data. The primary data related for the semi-annual report and annual report of the SRFSI project were collected jointly by the DADO, Sunsari and RARST, Tarahara. Study revealed that farmers had several tangible advantages and getting higher productivity through these practices. This study assessed the potential of CA based practices in Rice-Wheat and Rice-Maize farming system to improve the yields, net profit for sustainability of the cereal based farming system.
International Center for Agriculture Research in Dry Areas (ICARDA)
ahmad amri, El-Haddoury Jamal
Constant climatic change and rapid evolution of diseases and pests have created challenges for plant breeders to find novel sources of resistance within cultivated gene pool. However wild (alien) relatives of crops still carries many promising resistance genes to biotic and abiotic stresses. Plant breeders around the world have successfully attempted to recover some of the beneficial genetic diversity lost (or never included) during the domestication and crop improvement process by crossing cultivated varieties with wild species to introgressed many valuable genes into crops like wheat and barley. This pre-breeding attempt to regain the genetic diversity of crops based on crop wild relatives (CWR) had been started at ICARDA 1994. Furthermore, The Global Crop Diversity Trust (GCDT) recently provided a grant to ICARDA within the Crop Wild Relatives (CWR) project to strengthen the research on use of genetic resources in pre-breeding of barley and grass pea. The pre-breeding activity in barley is focused on transferring genes of resistance to complex diseases and pests (scald, spot blotch and barley gall midge), improving tolerance to drought, heat and salinity, and enhancing the nutritional value through improving Iron and Zinc concentrations and amylases activity. Crosses were made between wild barely H. Vulgare X cultivated barley H. Vulgare subsp. H. spontaneum. The main objective of pre-breeding in Grasspea is transferring genes of low or no ?-ODAP from crossable species L. cicera and L. amphicarpus, L. tingitanus, L. aphaca, L. odoratus, L. sphaericus, L. nissolia, and L. aureus. Interspecific crosses were made between L. sativus x L.cicera followed by embryo rescue. Currently all the pre-breeding lines with targeted traits are under screening against the respective selection pressures using precision phenotyping..
USDA-ARS Cereal Disease Laboratory
Maria Ordonez, Silvia German, Kun Xiao, Amy Fox, Maricelis Acevedo
The leaf rust pathogen, Puccinia triticina is widespread across all major wheat growing regions worldwide. Collections of P. triticina were obtained from common and durum wheat in North America, South America, Europe, South Africa, the Middle East, East Africa, Russia, Central Asia, China, Pakistan and New Zealand in order to determine the genetic diversity within each region and genetic relationship between regions. A total of 831 single uredinial isolates were characterized for virulence to isogenic lines of Thatcher wheat and for molecular genotype at 23 SSR loci. The isolates in East Africa and Europe were the most diverse for the average number of effective alleles per locus, while the populations in Russia and North America were the least diverse. The isolates in Europe and South America had the highest number of multilocus genotypes of 81 and 75, respectively, and were the most diverse for Shannon's genotypic diversity. All populations had significantly higher levels of Ho compared to He at individual SSR loci, and had highly significant values of Ia and rd which indicated clonal reproduction. Europe had the highest number of distinct SSR genotype groups with eight, and Russia had only two SSR groups. The populations in North America and South America; Russia and Central Asia; the Middle East and East Africa; were closely related for SSR genotype based on Nei's genetic distance. Based on k means clustering and DAPC of SSR genotypes, isolates virulent to durum wheat were placed into a single separate group, and isolates virulent to common wheat were placed into five other groups. Twenty-seven SSR genotypes were found in different continental regions. Isolates with identical or highly related SSR genotypes also had identical or similar virulence, which indicated historical and current migration of P. triticina worldwide.