Research press release


Nature Plants

Conserving crops’ ability to get wild with relatives



Nora Castaneda-Alvarezたちは、生物多様性、ハーバリウム、および遺伝子バンクのデータベース中の存在データを利用して、81作物に近縁の1000種類を超える遺伝型の世界的分布をモデル化し、その多様性を遺伝子バンクの多様性と比較した。その結果、遺伝子バンクは作物の近縁野生種の多様性が不十分で、70%超は一層の収集の緊急性が高いことが明らかにされ、95%超は自然分布中の地理的および生態学的変動全体に照らして収集が不足していることが分かった。収集の不足が著しいのは、地中海および近東、西欧および南欧、東南アジアおよび東アジア、ならびに南米であることが明らかにされた。

The diversity among wild relatives of domesticated crops is currently poorly represented in repositories established to conserve plant biodiversity, reports a paper published online this week in Nature Plants. The study calls for a systematic effort to increase the conservation of the wild relatives of crops by increasing their availability in gene banks for use in plant breeding.

The wild cousins of cultivated plant species possess genetic diversity that may prove useful for developing more productive, nutritious and resilient crop varieties. However, this expectation is based on the assumption that crop wild relatives will be readily available for research and plant breeding, either in the wild or stored in gene banks.

Nora Castaneda-Alvarez and colleagues used occurrence data from biodiversity, herbarium and gene bank databases to model the global distribution of over 1,000 different genotypes of 81 crops, comparing their diversity to that represented in gene banks. They find that the diversity of crop wild relatives is poorly represented, with over 70% identified as having high priority for further collection, and over 95% insufficiently represented with respect to the full range of geographic and ecological variation in their native distributions. They find that the greatest collection deficits occur in the Mediterranean and the Near East, western and southern Europe, Southeast and East Asia, and South America.

doi: 10.1038/nplants.2016.22

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