Wild relatives add significant agronomic improvement and disease resistance to lentils
- Impact Area
In the face of declining biodiversity, it is necessary to widen the genetic base of food crops. Wild relatives can play a key role in introgressing novel genetic variation in the cultivated gene pool of major pulses — to go beyond the repeated use of a narrow range of parents and their derivatives in crop improvement programs.
A new study analyzes the introduction of two wild lentil taxa, Lens culinaris ssp. orientalis and Lens ervoides, into the backgrounds of cultivated varieties. The resulting interspecific derivatives were evaluated at two locations in India, by scientists from the National Bureau of Plant Genetic Resources (NBPGR), International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA), and Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology (SKUAST).