Global team cracks ancestor genome of groundnut – ICRISAT

A scientific breakthrough on the DNA sequencing of the groundnut promises the development of improved varieties with enhanced traits such as increased pod and oil yield, drought and heat tolerance and greater disease resistance, ICRISAT said in a statement.

It said a team of 51 scientists from nine institutes in China, India, USA and Australia, including the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT), have decoded the complete DNA sequencing of the ancestor of the groundnut, the diploid A-genome (Arachis duranensis).

Other significant traits this could help develop include aflatoxin-free, nutrition-rich and allergen-free varieties, the statement said, adding that the breakthrough also provides insights into geocarpy – a unique reproductive process of the groundnut, oil biosynthesis and allergens.

“This study has not just provided the full genome sequence to help plant breeders across the globe to develop more productive and more resilient groundnut varieties in a faster manner, but also provides us an insight to geocarpy, a reproductive process where the flowers grown on the stem go inside the soil and pod formations occur,” said Dr Rajeev Varshney, Co-Coordinator of Genome Sequencing Project and Research Program Director, Genetic Gains program at ICRISAT.


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