• U. Najeeb
  • M. Y. Mirza
  • G. Jilani
  • A. K. Mubashir
  • W. J. Zhou


Sesame (Sesamum indicum L.) is one of the oldest domesticated oilseed crops. Due to the presence of high oil, protein and other nutritional elements, its seed has become an important ingredient of food and feed. However, lack of information about sesame yield structure has restricted the process of crop improvement through breeding. Sesame breeding methods vary from plant selection and hybridization to molecular breeding. Genetic variability in a species is the basic requirement of any breeding program. Available genetic diversity is either directly used for evaluation and selection or desired traits are combined into a single plant via hybridization and backcrossing. Sesame germplasm evaluation and selection for high-yielding varieties are based on genetic heritability estimates of yield-related traits including higher number of capsules, branches and plant biomass, etc. Mutational techniques are employed for broadening genetic diversity of sesame breeding material. Concentrations and application time of any mutagen were found critical for mutation-breeding program. Large number of sesame varieties possessing desirable traits for higher yield and better quality has been developed through mutagenesis. Application of innovative breeding methods helps to reduce our dependence on existence of genetic variability within a species and overcome the limitations of conventional breeding. For this purpose biotechnological techniques have been introduced to sesame breeding programs. Protocols for sesame in vitro culturing and genetic transformation are optimized by using appropriate concentration of hormones and nutrients. Various marker-assisted selection (MAS) techniques such as isozymes, random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) and inter-simple sequence repeats (ISSR), etc. are also used in sesame breeding to study genetic variability of sesame to increase selection efficiency.


Sesame (Sesamum indicum L.) Genetic variability Mutational techniques Biotechnological techniques MAS RAPD ISSR 



We are highly grateful for the support from scientific officers of Oilseed Program of National Agriculture Research Centre, Islamabad, Pakistan; PMAS Arid Agriculture University, Rawalpindi, Pakistan; College of Agriculture and Biotechnology, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, China.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • U. Najeeb
    • 1
    • 2
  • M. Y. Mirza
    • 1
  • G. Jilani
    • 3
  • A. K. Mubashir
    • 1
  • W. J. Zhou
    • 4
  1. 1.Crop Sciences InstituteNational Agriculture Research CentreIslamabadPakistan
  2. 2.Institute of Crop ScienceZhejiang UniversityHangzhouChina
  3. 3.Department of AgronomyPMAS Arid Agriculture UniversityRawalpindiPakistan
  4. 4.Institute of Crop ScienceZhejiang UniversityHangzhouChina

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