Research

A genetic and genomics approach to improving the milling potential of durum wheat

  • Term: 3 years, beginning in 2018
  • Funding Amount: $ 458,816
  • Lead Researcher(s): Curtis Pozniak (University of Saskatchewan)
  • Funding Partners: N/A

Project Description:

This project builds on the success on the development of Genomic Selection (GS) model for CWRS and durum breeder chip development under CTAG and CTAG2 projects, co-funded by Sask Wheat along with several public and industry funding partners. The main focus of this project to develop GS techniques to support marker assisted breeding for milling properties.

Durum wheat is a major component (approx. 30%) of Canada’s international wheat exports, and development of new varieties to improve and maintain its value is a major factor for our continued success. Approximately 80% of Canadian durum is produced in Saskatchewan. Milling quality is an important trait required for durum variety registration. Continued access to high quality markets requires continued supply of varieties with high milling potential. The genetic inheritance of milling traits is very complex, which would make traditional marker-assisted selection impractical in durum breeding program, however, recent research results support that genomic selection (GS) could be valuable approach as demonstrated in hexaploid wheat.

Thus, the objective is to determine the distribution of ash content in the kernel of cultivars of durum wheat with variable expression; to develop and validate robust genotyping platforms for durum wheat with the specific focus on genetic mapping populations with a large range in phenotypic expression of milling potential; and to develop genomic selection prediction models using a combination of high density molecular data and robust milling data. 

Identification of molecular markers for semolina milling will hasten incorporation of high milling yield into new varieties for farmers by ensuring that only early generation lines with adequate semolina yields are advanced to registration trials.

Latest Research

Scale-up production and field-testing of biological agents for controlling Fusarium Head Blight in wheat

This project builds on the initial findings of the researcher’s team on identification of a new biological control agent (BCA), a new species of fungus native to Saskatchewan developed into a biopesticide to fight mycotoxigenic Fusarium-FHB pathogens.

view all