Molecular Genetic Improvement of Wheat

  • Indra K. Vasil
  • Vimla Vasil
Conference paper
Part of the NATO ASI Series book series (volume 81)

Abstract

Cereal grains like wheat, rice and maize were most likely amongst the first plants domesticated by prehistoric man, and ever since have exerted a dominant influence on the development of the human civilization. Even today they constitute the most important group of food plants by virtue of providing more than 50% of all food consumed by man in addition to being the principal source of calories and protein in the human diet. The yield as well as the quality of cereal crops have been greatly improved during the past several decades by the traditional methods of breeding and selection. Significant further improvement of cereal crops is, however, limited by the time consuming and labor intensive nature of plant breeding methods, the restricted gene pool, and most importantly by the severe natural barriers to hybridization with even closely related species. It is in this context that the novel methods of plant cell and molecular biology, which permit the introduction of selected and defined plant as well as bacterial, viral and other genes of interest into plants, offer new opportunities for supplementing as well as complementing plant breeding and selection for the improvement of crop plants.

Keywords

Maize Agar Polyethylene Glycol Tungsten 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • Indra K. Vasil
    • 1
  • Vimla Vasil
    • 1
  1. 1.Laboratory of Plant Cell and Molecular BiologyUniversity of FloridaGainesvilleUSA

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