India on Pace for Full Wheat Genome Sequencing in Three Years
To date, a French group working for more than ten years has been successful in sequencing one wheat chromosome, but India has made it known that it is targeting the sequencing of the entire wheat genome within three years to produce higher quality varieties according to the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR).
A main goal of this initiative is to develop wheat that can withstand conditions created by global warming.
“Climate change leads to rise in global mean temperature resulting in droughts, flooding, and altered land behavior, according to ICAR. “Besides, high temperature during seed-sowing periods adversely affects the production.”
Through the study of a hybrid of the drought-resistant C-306 variety and the green revolution W-711 variety, ICAR has indicated that the part of the genome responsible for lower water consumption and high seed growth rates has been identified. And according to the council, once the genome sequencing is completed, these findings could almost double wheat’s reproduction pace. Through identifying how wheat’s DNA regulates various traits, new varieties can be developed within five to seven years instead of the current 10 to fifteen years.