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Plant Breeding and Genomics Online Resource Reaches Milestone

Plant Breeding and Genomics Online Resource Reaches Milestone

Growth in the global population is placing an increased demand on the world's resources to sustain our society for food, feed, fuel, fiber, and environment, underscoring a need for safe and efficient crop production systems. To date, traditional plant breeding methods have served well to meet increased demands.  Projected increases from 7 billion to 9 billion people in the next 40 years will require continued progress. Improvements in the efficiency and cost of DNA sequencing technologies are providing vital information on the genetics and genomics of crop plants. This information is paving the way for new plant breeding strategies to meet global food demands.

Earlier this year, a group of researchers and educators from America’s land-grant universities, government agencies, and industry banded together to create the first-ever internet resource aimed at quickly putting basic research on crop genomes into practice. The resource is housed at eXtension (pronounced E-extension) at www.extension.org/plant_breeding_genomics. Less than one year from its launch, the resource reached a milestone of 100,000 views this month.

Researchers and Extension personnel regularly contribute webinars, videos, informational articles, reviews, blog entries, and tutorials to the resource. The effort is led by the Solanaceae Coordinated Agricultural Project (SolCAP), a USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA)-funded program. SolCAP recruited a community of experts from a wider range of Coordinated Agricultural Projects (CAPs). Members of the Conifer Translational Genomics Network (CTGN) partnered with SolCAP to publish a multi-part series of online learning modules that cover topics from introductory genetics and genomics to the applied use of genomics tools in tree breeding and ecosystem management. Content previously supported by the NIFA funded Barley CAP are now supported by the Institute of Barley and Malting Sciences (IBMS) at North Dakota State University. Other educational materials include modules developed by the Rosaceae CAP (RosBREED), a project funded through NIFA's Specialty Crop Research Initiative.

Plant breeding professionals, researchers, educators, students, and the general public are encouraged to follow development of this resource by subscribing to PBG’s newsletter (PBG News) at http://pbgworks.org.

Contacts:
David Francis, The Ohio State University, francis.77@osu.edu
Heather Merk, The Ohio State University, merk.9@osu.edu
David Douches, Michigan State University, douchesd@msu.edu
Karen Hertsgaard, Institute of Barley and Malt Sciences, North Dakota State University, karen.hertsgaard@ndsu.edu
Glenn Howe, Oregon State University, glenn.howe@oregonstate.edu
Lynette Spicer, Iowa State University, lynette.spicer@extension.org
 

Watch Plant Breeding and Genomics Webinar Recordings!

If any of the above statements piqued your interest, watch plant breeding and genomics webinar recordings today!

 

Webinars from the SolCAP Workshop at the 2011 PAA Meeting Now Available on eXtension

Did you miss the SolCAP workshop at the 2011 PAA meeting?

Would you like to hear David Francis talk about breeding in the genomics era again?

If so, check out the recordings on eXtension

You can also watch the videos on our YouTube channel

Subscribe to pbgnews today at http://pbgworks.org!

Please contact Heather Merk (merk.9@osu.edu) if you have questions or concerns regarding this newsletter

 

Genomics in Tree Breeding and Forest Ecosystem Management – A Suite of Online Teaching Modules.

Conifer Translational Genomics Network (CTGN) team members are pleased to announce the roll-out (publication) of a suite of new on-line teaching modules that cover topics from introductory genetics and genomics to applied use of genomics tools in tree breeding and ecosystem management (association genetics, genomic selection, landscape genomics). CTGN is an Integrated Coordinated Agricultural Project with the goal of bringing marker-informed breeding (MIB) to application for tree-breeding cooperatives that provide over 1.3 billion seedlings annually in the United States. Forest tree breeding is particularly well-positioned to gain from marker based breeding. There are several reasons for this, but the two most important are the very long timelines necessary to complete phenotypic evaluation for most important trees traits and the significant costs associated with gathering that information. Genetic tests for phenotypic evaluation require a lot of land and expensive annual maintenance. While the cost of markers is decreasing with time the cost of field tests continues to increase. In addition, mosttraits of interest in trees are highly polygenic and of low heritability. If markers are able to account for a large proportion of genetic variation for a trait then marker selection will be more precise than phenotypic selection.

Offered as part of the Plant Breeding and Genomics Community of Practice with eXtension (pronounced e-Extension), the modules are designed to serve as complementary teaching aids for University instructors or as stand-alone lessons for students, practitioners, or curious laypeople. The full list of modules can be found at eXtension.org or on the CTGN webpage.

The modules are offered as large format Flash videos, each with a table of contents, the ability to search the text of the slides, and complete closed captioning. Spoken commentary accompanies the slides and provides an in-depth look at the issues relating to the information. A pdf version of each module is also available for download. In addition to the full movie versions on eXtension.org, the modules will be made available at the Plant Breeding and Genomics Community of Practice YouTube channel.

The modules were composed by CTGN personnel and were subject to external peer review. The production of the publications has been managed in collaboration with members of the USDA-sponsored Solanaceae Coordinated Agricultural Project (SolCAP). The CTGN Project outcomes have been delivered directly to breeders and documented in databases offered at our project website. An assertive and comprehensive education and outreach program has provided widespread training for school teachers, undergraduate and graduate students, tree breeders, managers, lay-people, and other stakeholders. The teaching modules noted here represent our efforts to make a lasting outreach contribution to the scientific community.

Support for the Conifer Translational Genomics Network project and the development of the teaching modules hosted at the PBG website was provided by the USDA/NRI CSREES Plant Genomics Coordinated Agricultural Project (CAP) Award # 2007-55300-18603, the USDA/NIFA AFRI Applied Plant Genomics CAP Award #2009-85606-05680 and the USDA Forest Service. Development of the website was supported in part by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) Solanaceae Coordinated Agricultural Project, agreement 2009-85606-05673, administered by Michigan State University. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the United States Department of Agriculture.

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