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Breeding of Coconut (Cocos Nucifera L.): The Tree of Life

  • Yaodong Yang
  • Amjad Iqbal
  • Rashad Qadri
Chapter

Abstract

Coconut ( Cocos nucifera L.) is a continuous fruiting perennial tropical fruit and oil crop that is mainly cultivated in the humid and sub-humid coastal tropics. It is a perennial multipurpose palm with great importance in sustaining the life of the people who grow them for various economical uses. As coconut is known as the tree of life, efforts have been made to sustain its production to fulfill the demands of the people. In this regard, coconut genetic resources have been widely exploited through selection, hybridization for a number of desirable traits that resulted in the development of many productive varieties. With increasing demand from the coconut sector, particularly the nontraditional coconut products, it is indeed crucial to identify and screen the potential varieties. However, due to the biological nature of the coconut, the traditional way of breeding might not be feasible; therefore, molecular-aided breeding can be the best alternative. Molecular-aided breeding can play an important role in future coconut breeding programs with the advancements in biotechnology. The strategies suggested for future breeding programs, include development of new high yielding, stress tolerant and disease resistant varieties with the benefits of providing high value-added products, like inflorescence sap or high oil content, and varieties with slow vertical growth. With the availability whole genomic sequences of coconut more opportunities exist for the development of molecular markers, thus encouraging the use of molecular-aided breeding in future coconut breeding programs.

Keywords

Coconut Genetic resources Molecular markers Omics Tissue culture Breeding 

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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Hainan Key Laboratory of Tropical Oil Crops BiologyCoconut Research Institute, Chinese Academy of Tropical Agricultural SciencesWenchangChina
  2. 2.Department of AgricultureAbdul Wali Khan University MardanMardanPakistan
  3. 3.Institute of Horticultural SciencesUniversity of Agriculture FaisalabadFaisalabadPakistan

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