IntroductionProfessors write for new biodiversity resource.
This month sees the publication of volume 4 of Springer’s major book series Wild Crop Relatives: Genomic and Breeding Resources. This volume deals with Legume Crops and Forages and the chapter on the genus Vicia (the vetches) has been written Stephen Hughes, Associate Director of Egenis and by John Bryant, Professor Emeritus in Biosciences and Affiliate Professor, Egenis.
“Steve Hughes and I were delighted to be invited to contribute to this very important series which will be a major resource for plant breeders and geneticists for years to come,” said Prof Bryant. “The genus Vicia occupies a special place in human development – two species were members of the group of ‘founder crops’ of human agriculture. There are about 150 vetches in total, representing a huge untapped source of ‘wild’ genetic variation for possible use in crop improvement.”
According to the series editor, Professor Chittaranjan Kole of Clemson University, USA: “Wild crop relatives are now playing a significant part in the elucidation and improvement of the genomes of their cultivated counterparts. This work includes comprehensive examinations of the status, origin, distribution, genetic diversity and available genetic and genomic resources of numerous wild crop relatives, as well as of their evolution and phylogenetic relationships. Further topics include their role as model plants in research, genetic erosion and conservation efforts, and their domestication for the newer purposes of bioenergy, phytomedicines, nutraceuticals and phytoremediation.”
Wild Crop Relatives: Genomic and Breeding Resources. Legume Crops and Forages, edited by Chittaranjan Kole, is available now from Springer at a cost of £135. Wild Crop Relatives: Genomic and Breeding Resources comprises 10 volumes on Cereals, Millets and Grasses, Oilseeds, Legume Crops and Forages, Vegetables, Temperate Fruits, Tropical and Subtropical Fruits, Industrial Crops, Plantation and Ornamental Crops, and Forest Trees.