Genetic resources of lentil and its utilization in India

Singh, Mohar and Sardana, Saroj and Sharma, Shyam Kumar (2011) Genetic resources of lentil and its utilization in India. Plant Genetic Resources: Characterization and Utilization (First View Articles). 8pp..

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Lentil is recognised as the most nutritious rabi pulse and, with respect to acreage, it ranks next to chickpea. It is grown throughout northern and central India. A large percentage of Indians are vegetarian and lentil has long been part of India’s indigenous diet, and is a common source of protein. Of about 60 varieties released in India to date, 13 have been developed by hybridization, mostly from parents not distantly related. The narrow genetic base of the presently cultivated varieties and losses due to biotic and abiotic stress factors remain the main cause of concern. Introgression of genes between microsperma and macrosperma groups of lentil from closely related species like L. culinaris subspp. Orientalis and use of biotechnological tools, wherever necessary, have been recommended by various workers to broaden the genetic base of this crop. Direct selection for grain yield through important component traits such as pods/ plant, seeds/pod, number of clusters/plant, harvest index, biological yield, early maturing and breeding for better yield quality have been suggested. Realizing the significance of plant germplasm, special efforts have been made by the national bureau to collect the genetic resources of lentil from different states of India. A large number of accessions were characterised and evaluated for various agro-morphological traits, using the lentil minimal descriptor. The core collection comprising 287 promising accessions recorded variation for seed yield and its important component traits; variation was also observed for important morphological traits, using mutation breeding approaches. These genetic resources of lentil have also been screened for tolerance to several biotic stresses and a few lines showed immunity against rust, blight and fusarium wilt and these have been utilized as donors in cross-breeding programmes. On the other hand, wild Lens species revealed substantial genetic diversity for phenological and agro-morphological characters, including some important diseases of lentil. From these genetic resources, potential donors of desirable traits have been selected after evaluation and characterization and have been utilized in the genetic improvement of cultivars.

Item Type: Article
Author Affiliation: National Bureau of Plant Genetic Resources, New Delhi-110 012, India
Subjects: Crop Improvement > Genetics/Genomics
Divisions: Chickpea
Depositing User: Sandhya Gir
Date Deposited: 28 Feb 2011 16:00
Last Modified: 28 Feb 2011 16:00
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