Enhancing sorghum grain yield and quality for the Sudano-Sahelian zone of West Africa using the Backcross Nested Association Mapping (BCNAM) approach

Published on 21 November 2011

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Start Date: 1 July 2010 | End Date: 30 June 2014


Sorghum improvement in Africa deals with a wide range of harsh and highly variable environments. The local varieties are specifically adapted to the biotic and abiotic constraints and have an excellent grain quality but with low yield potentials. Sorghum breeding programs in West Africa must work with a considerable number of traits, and address the specific adaptation requirements for specific and variable agro-ecologies. This project will enhance the capacity of national and international breeding programs while using sorghum germplasm diversity and advanced molecular tools.
This project will result in the development of modified backcross populations that will be of long-term value in relating sorghum traits to their corresponding genes. The planned population structure will facilitate the QTL mapping of range of traits conditioning productivity, adaptation, and preferred grain quality traits.
Forty to fifty populations of 100 lines each will be developed from back-crosses carried out with 3 recurrent parents which represent the target ideotypes to be improved. The donor parents include 10 common donors and 20 specific donors representing the diversity of the improved and local varieties.
The capacity of National breeding programs will be strengthened by creating a regional data management unit within the IER (Mali), which will support scientists in the effective application and use of molecular data for improved effectiveness of sorghum breeding activities.

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