Breeding for stripe rust resistance in spring wheat germplasm adapted to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan
Stripe rust is one of the major limiting factors in wheat production. An objective-based breeding program was initiated at Barani Agricultural Research Station (BARS), Kohat in 2013/14 to transfer APR genes from CIMMYT and ICARDA spring wheat lines into wheat germplasm well adapted in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK). Nine high yielding but stripe rust susceptible KPK wheat varieties were crossed in various combination with 17 CIMMYT and ICARDA wheat lines carrying resistance genes. The resultant 79 F1s were backcrossed with respective susceptible parents followed by single plant selection in F2 generation. During 2015/16, 367 segregating populations/lines were screened in multi-environment stripe rust tests within Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Sixty-nine out of 367 lines showing adequate resistance were again screened for strip rust resistance at hot spot and in yield trial at BARS, Kohat during 2016/17. Seventeen lines showed considerable resistance and were higher yielding than check cultivars. Lines exhibiting adequate resistance will be further tested in advanced yield trial at provincial and national level for possible release of new varieties in wheat.