Genomics approaches to agricultural product improvement
Henry, RJ 2008, ‘Genomics approaches to agricultural product improvement’, paper presented to Australia-Brazil Workshop on Biotechnology Innovations for Agriculture, Brazil, 5-8 May.
Genomics approaches have been applied to the discovery of genes determining agricultural product quality. Identification of the desirable alleles of quality genes provides very useful tools for selection in plant improvement. Re-sequencing of genomic sequences and transcriptome analysis of genotypes differing for the traits of interest have been used successfully as strategies to discovery major quality genes. DNA sequencing and mutation detection using EMAIL (an improved version of TILLING) are efficient approaches. DNA banking of Australian and economic plant species has provided a resource for application of these tools in discovery of useful alleles of important genes. Examples of key targets for these strategies have been grain quality, in rice (cooking qualities and flavour), wheat (milling performance) and barley (malting and food quality), sugar content in sugarcane and wood quality (Eucalypts).