Abstract Detail

Crops and Wild Relatives

Marques, Edward [1], Ahmed, Irshad [2], Rouf, Reyaz [2], Guar, Pooran [3], Vadez, Vincent [3], von Wettberg, Eric J [5], Penmetsa, R. Varma [6], Kholova, Jana [3].

Development of Stay-Green Chickpea Technology to Benefit Small-holder Farmers in the Semi-Arid Tropics.

Chickpea is the second most grown pulse legume worldwide and is a primary source of plant protein for 15% of the world’s population living in semi-arid tropical (SAT) regions. In these regions, fluctuations in chickpea production and consumption threaten the nutritional and economic status of the subsistent farming communities. In many of these SAT regions, chickpea crops are typically raised during the low-income post-rainy season in variable rain-fed conditions which largely affects its production. Thus, finding and introducing chickpea adapted to these conditions is a practical strategy to enhance chickpea production value chains of the semi-arid tropics. One viable option to overcome this post-rain season and limited irrigation environment is “cosmetic” stay-green chickpea technology. This stay-green chickpea type carries a deleterious mutation of the StGR1 gene that inhibits enzymes of the chlorophyll catabolism pathway, which leads to extended chlorophyll retention in seeds and leaves. Consequently, elevated levels of chlorophyll may extend the lifespan of light harvesting antennae (and increases production of reactive oxygen species (ROS)) in plant tissues, which in turn, requires additional maintenance in the form of higher carotenoid levels, the ROS scavengers. Higher levels of carotenoids involved in photo-oxidative protection are very likely to enhance the nutritional value of the crop since these are also precursors of vitamin A. Therefore, the goal of this study is to investigate the effect of this trait on key agronomic parameters and response to growth in SAT (drought-prone) regions. With the use of the introgressed StGR1 gene (from donor parent ICC16340) on the background of two cultivars (KAK2, JGK1) fixed for phenology and harvest index. We assessed the StGR1 mutation effect on basic agronomy traits, plant water use-related traits, responsiveness to soil and atmospheric drought, chlorophyll contents, and carotenoid concentrations. The current status of the study will be presented, but ultimately the data gathered will allow us to determine the potential of stay-green technology to enhance crop production and nutrition for small-hold farmers in the semi-arid tropics. 

1 - University of Vermont, Plant and Soil Science, 143 Howard St Apt 3, Burlington, VT, 05401, USA
2 - Sher-E-Kashmir University of Science and Technology
3 - International Crop Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRIS
4 - International Crop Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRIS
5 - 63 Carrigan Drive, 205 Jeffords Hall, University Of Vermont, Burlington, VT, 05405, United States
6 - University of California Davis
7 - International Crop Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRIS

Semi-arid tropics
small hold

Presentation Type: Oral Paper
Abstract ID:241
Candidate for Awards:None

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