Plant Genetic Resources of Legumes in the Mediterranean

  • Nigel Maxted
  • Sarita Jane Bennett

Part of the Current Plant Science and Biotechnology in Agriculture book series (PSBA, volume 39)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xxi
  2. Introduction

    1. Front Matter
      Pages N1-N1
    2. Nigel Maxted, Sarita Jane Bennett
      Pages 1-32
    3. Sarita Jane Bennett, Nigel Maxted
      Pages 33-50
    4. Nigel Maxted, Sarita Jane Bennett
      Pages 51-75
  3. Genetic Diversity of Legumes in the Mediterranean

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 77-77
    2. Emma-Jane Lamont, Aziza Zoghlami, Ruaraidh Sackville Hamilton, Sarita Jane Bennett
      Pages 79-98
    3. Jean-Marie Prosperi, Geoff Auricht, G. Génier, Richard Johnson
      Pages 99-114
    4. Richard Hannan, Nevin Açikgöz, Larry D. Robertson
      Pages 115-124
    5. Morag Ferguson, William Erskine
      Pages 125-133
    6. Mark van de Wouw, Dirk Enneking, Larry D. Robertson, Nigel Maxted
      Pages 134-158
    7. Ashutosh Sarker, Ali Abd El Moneim, Nigel Maxted
      Pages 159-180
    8. Nigel Maxted, Mike Ambrose
      Pages 181-190
    9. Wallace Cowling
      Pages 191-206
    10. Sarita Bennett, Clive Francis, Bob Reid
      Pages 207-230
    11. John G. Howieson
      Pages 231-242
  4. Conservation of Legume Species in the Mediterranean

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 243-243
    2. Larry D. Robertson, Nigel Maxted
      Pages 245-262
    3. Ruaraidh Sackville Hamilton, Steve Hughes, Nigel Maxted
      Pages 263-291
    4. Nigel Maxted, Ayfer Tan, Ahmed Amri, Jan Valkoun
      Pages 292-308
  5. Utilisation of Legumes in the Mediterranean

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 309-309
    2. William Erskine, Kaddambot Siddique, Tanveer Khan, Wallace Cowling
      Pages 311-326
    3. Kenneth A. Street, Larry D. Robertson, Nigel Maxted
      Pages 327-353
  6. Afterword

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 355-355
    2. Nigel Maxted, Sarita Jane Bennett
      Pages 357-378
  7. Back Matter
    Pages 379-380

About this book


Genetic erosion, that is, the loss of native plant and genetic diversity has been exponential from the Mediterranean Basin through the Twentieth century. This careless eradication of species and genetic diversity as a result of human activities from a 'hot-spot' of diversity threatens sustainable agriculture and food security for the temperate regions of the world. Since the early 1900s there has been a largely ad hoc movement to halt the loss of plant diversity and enhance its utilisation. The Convention on Biological Diversity and Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations International Undertaking on Plant Genetic Resources, both highlight the need to improve conservation methodologies and enhance utilisation techniques. It has been argued that the most important component of biodiversity is the genetic diversity of crop and forage species used to feed humans and livestock. These cultivated and related wild species provides the raw material for further selection and improvement.
Leguminosae species are of major economic importance (peas, chickpeas, lentils and faba beans, as well as numerous forage species) and provide a particularly rich source of protein for human and animal foods. Their distribution is concentrated in the Mediterranean region and therefore the improvement of their conservation and use in the region is critical.
This text is designed to help ensure an adequate breadth of legume diversity is conserved and to help maximise the use of that conserved diversity. The subjects of conservation and use of legume diversity, the Mediterranean ecosystem and taxonomy of legumes are introduced. Generic reviews of the taxonomy, centre of diversity, ecogeographic distribution, genetic diversity distribution, conservation status, conservation gaps and future research needs are provided, along with a discussion of the importance of rhizobia to the maintenance of legume diversity. Current ex situ and in situ conservation activities as well current legume uses are reviewed. In conclusion future priorities for ex situ and in situ plant genetic conservation and use of Mediterranean legumes are highlighted. All contributors look forward rather than simply reviewing past and current activities and therefore it is hoped that the identification of genetic erosion, location of taxonomic and genetic diversity and promotion of more efficient utilisation of conserved material will be enhanced.


agriculture biodiversity ecosystem erosion food security plant protein taxonomy

Editors and affiliations

  • Nigel Maxted
    • 1
  • Sarita Jane Bennett
    • 2
  1. 1.University of BirminghamUSA
  2. 2.Centre for Legumes in Mediterranean Agriculture (CLIMA)Australia

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2001
  • Publisher Name Springer, Dordrecht
  • eBook Packages Springer Book Archive
  • Print ISBN 978-90-481-5613-9
  • Online ISBN 978-94-015-9823-1
  • Series Print ISSN 0924-1949
  • Buy this book on publisher's site
Industry Sectors
Chemical Manufacturing
Consumer Packaged Goods