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Julius Kühn-Institut (JKI)
Federal Research Centre
for Cultivated Plants

Dr. Peter Wehling

Groß Lüsewitz
Rudolf-Schick-Platz 3a
18190 Sanitz, Germany

Ms Annett Sitte
Tel: +49(0)38209 45-200
Fax: +49(0)38209 45-222
E-mail: zl@  jki.bund.  de

Erwin-Baur-Str. 27
06484 Quedlinburg, Germany

+49(0)3946 47-701/-702/-704/-530
Fax: +49(0)3946 47-255
E-mail: zl@  jki.bund.  de

Institute booklet

Genetics of valuable traits

The way a valuable trait found in a plant genetic resource (PGR) can be introduced into adapted breeding germplasm of a given crop plant essentially depends on how the trait is inherited. Thus, genetic analysis of the trait’s variation is a fundamental step in exploiting plant genetic diversity for breeding and improving crop species.

Once a potentially valuable trait expression has been observed in a PGR the genetics behind this trait may have great impact on devising a strategy for making it accessible to plant breeding. The number of genes involved in trait expression, the dominant or recessive action of such genes and their individual contributions to final trait expression, their accessibility to marker-assisted selection, their genetic linkages to neighboring genes which would exert undesirable impacts on crop plant performance (linkage drag) – these and more aspects have to be considered when devising a strategy for using gene variants in PGR to further improve our crop plants.