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Wheat genetics - Greengrain

Photo of Greengrain; lighter strips have no applied fertiliser and dark have
This project, to enhance wheat for distilling, poultry feeding and bioethanol, has partners from these industries and from plant breeding.

This project, to enhance wheat for distilling, poultry feeding and bioethanol, has partners from these industries and from plant breeding, with trials at the Institute and two ADAS sites. The genetic component, led by the James Hutton Institute, aims to identify traits contributing to high alcohol yield and locate the genetic factors controlling them, helping wheat breeders choose the best parents and use DNA-based selection to identify their most promising lines.

The ADAS-led, physiological component assesses N uptake and storage in vegetative tissues, with the aim of selecting varieties with lower N fertiliser requirement, but no yield penalty. Low grain N is the main factor in high alcohol yield, but there is additional genetic and environmental variation. Along with FOSS and the Scotch Whisky Research Institute, we have derived a NIR-based method to predict alcohol yield. Two populations are being assessed, to determine the wider utility of DNA markers already identified, while another trial determines variation in physiological traits in wide-ranging varieties. Trials are grown with and without fertiliser, to determine whether or not genotypes respond differentially to applied N, offering the prospect of identifying genotypes less dependent on applied N. For more information, please visit the Greengrain project website.

Research

Areas of Interest


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The James Hutton Research Institute is the result of the merger in April 2011 of MLURI and SCRI. This merger formed a new powerhouse for research into food, land use, and climate change.