Triticale (x Triticosecale Wittmack) Breeding

  • Mohamed MergoumEmail author
  • Suraj Sapkota
  • Ahmed ElFatih A. ElDoliefy
  • Sepehr M. Naraghi
  • Seyed Pirseyedi
  • Mohammed S. Alamri
  • Wesam AbuHammad


Triticale (x Triticosecale Wittmack) is a man-made, self-pollinated cereal crop specie developed by crossing wheat (Triticum spp.) and rye (Secale cereale). The initial goal of creating triticale was to develop a new cereal crop that would combine the superior agro-morphological and end-use quality characteristics of wheat, and the adaptability, vigor and resistance/tolerance to abiotic and biotic stresses of rye. Triticale is well adapted to a wider range of environments where wheat is grown; moreover, under stress conditions, triticale performs better. Triticale has been grown worldwide mainly for grain and forage production, and recently for bioenergy production. Although the grain quality of triticale is unsatisfactory compared to other small grain crops such as wheat, it still possesses a good level of resistance to multiple diseases and pests and many useful genes have been successfully transferred to wheat from triticale. The majority of triticale breeding programs focus on the improvement of economically-important traits such as grain and biomass yield, diseases and pest resistance, quality and agronomic traits. Several studies have demonstrated that genetic diversity within triticale germplasm is low, which is not unexpected. Traditional breeding methods are most commonly used in triticale improvement. Currently, modern breeding approaches, such as marker-assisted selection (MAS), genomic selection, double-haploid (DH) and genetic transformations are being explored to improve triticale. Use of molecular breeding technology and molecular markers are limited in triticale but many molecular markers of wheat and rye are conserved in the triticale genome and therefore wheat and rye genomics can be used in triticale improvement. The objective of this chapter is to summarize the current status of triticale production worldwide and provide details on different breeding approaches being used to improve triticale cultivars.


Disease resistance Genome Grain yield Man-made Marker-assisted selection Triticale 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mohamed Mergoum
    • 1
    Email author
  • Suraj Sapkota
    • 1
  • Ahmed ElFatih A. ElDoliefy
    • 2
  • Sepehr M. Naraghi
    • 3
  • Seyed Pirseyedi
    • 4
  • Mohammed S. Alamri
    • 5
  • Wesam AbuHammad
    • 4
  1. 1.Crop and Soil Sciences Department/Institute of Plant Breeding, Genetics, and GenomicsUniversity of GeorgiaGriffinUSA
  2. 2.Department of Plant Molecular BiologyAgricultural Genetic Engineering Research Institute (AGERI), Agricultural Research Center (ARC)GizaEgypt
  3. 3.Department of Plant SciencesNorth Dakota State UniversityFargoUSA
  4. 4.Arizona Plant Breeders Inc.Casa GrandeUSA
  5. 5.Department of Food Sciences & NutritionKing Saud UniversityRiyadhSaudi Arabia

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