August 3, 2015


India to complete sequencing of wheat genome in three years


India, which is a partner of the International Wheat Genome Sequencing Consortium (IWGSC), hopes to conclude its sequencing of the wheat genome in three years, according to the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR).


The process would lead to producing crops of higher qualities.


The ICAR added that the aspiration was shared among other partners of the IWGSC.


Currently, the sequencing process is reported to be partially successful. "The genome sequenced so far is only the blueprint and not yet the complete genome," the ICAR said.


The wheat variety under scrutiny are "wild species" which could endure high temperatures, the body revealed. "These species have been collected by various explorers in the Middle East since 1960s."


An examination into a hybrid of the drought-resistant C-306 and W-711, a green revolution variety, had led to the identification of genomes which could promote seed growth and a lesser consumption of water.


The ICAR explained that the basis for the sequencing effort concerns the adverse effects of global warming on wheat production. "Climate change leads to rise in global mean temperature resulting in droughts, flooding, and altered land behaviour. Besides, high temperature during seed-sowing periods adversely affects the production," the council said.


Furthermore, successful identification of sequencing would mean an escalating pace of wheat reproduction. A new type of wheat could also be produced in five to seven years.

"We can work on production by introducing some new traits like drought-resistance, better quality and yield," ICAR commented.


Genome sequencing in India had already received funding from the National Research Centre on Plant Biotechnology between 2011-15, as well Punjab Agricultural University and UDSC.

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