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Projects / Programmes source: ARIS

GENETIC EROSION THREATS TO LOCAL VARIETIES AND THEIR VALUE FOR PRODUCTION AND USE

Research activity

Code Science Field Subfield
4.03.01  Biotechnical sciences  Plant production  Agricultural plants 

Code Science Field
B006  Biomedical sciences  Agronomics 

Code Science Field
4.01  Agricultural and Veterinary Sciences  Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries 
Keywords
landraces, diversity, perservation, VPU, nutritional value
Evaluation (rules)
source: COBISS
Researchers (20)
no. Code Name and surname Research area Role Period No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  13379  PhD Peter Dolničar  Plant production  Researcher  2016 - 2019  815 
2.  32786  Matjaž Dremelj    Technical associate  2016 - 2019 
3.  17045  Boštjan Godec  Plant production  Researcher  2016 - 2019  641 
4.  14033  PhD Metka Hudina  Plant production  Researcher  2016 - 2019  646 
5.  34256  PhD Aleš Kolmanič  Plant production  Researcher  2016 - 2019  294 
6.  05663  PhD Darinka Koron  Plant production  Researcher  2016 - 2019  746 
7.  29726  Radojko Pelengić  Plant production  Researcher  2016 - 2018  80 
8.  18213  Boštjan Per    Technical associate  2016 - 2019 
9.  29498  PhD Barbara Pipan  Plant production  Researcher  2016 - 2019  264 
10.  20377  Boštjan Saje    Technical associate  2016 - 2019 
11.  37723  PhD Lovro Sinkovič  Plant production  Researcher  2016 - 2019  221 
12.  07552  PhD Anita Solar  Plant production  Researcher  2016 - 2019  514 
13.  08746  PhD Matej Stopar  Plant production  Researcher  2016 - 2019  438 
14.  14538  Mojca Škof  Plant production  Technical associate  2016 - 2019  325 
15.  38767  PhD Katja Šuklje  Plant production  Researcher  2019  123 
16.  16393  PhD Kristina Ugrinović  Plant production  Head  2016 - 2019  638 
17.  11759  PhD Valentina Usenik  Plant production  Researcher  2016 - 2019  416 
18.  13374  Janko Verbič  Plant production  Researcher  2016 - 2019  343 
19.  08594  Andrej Zemljič  Plant production  Technical associate  2016 - 2019  291 
20.  39613  Igor Zidarič  Chemistry  Technical associate  2017 - 2018  148 
Organisations (2)
no. Code Research organisation City Registration number No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  0401  Agricultural institute of Slovenia  Ljubljana  5055431  20,096 
2.  0481  University of Ljubljana, Biotechnical Faculty  Ljubljana  1626914  66,562 
Abstract
Due to the abandonment of production of less profitable species and varieties of agricultural plants, many old varieties are completely lost, some are stored in gene banks, and only few are still cultivated to limited extent. Due to the massive abandonment of growing of older varieties we are facing "genetic erosion" i.e a loss of genetic diversity between and within populations or varieties of the same species. Preserving of diversity of agricultural plants makes an important contribution to the preservation of diversity in agriculture and beyond. Biodiversity in agriculture is necessary for the preservation of the key functions of agro-ecosystems and processes in food production. The importance of preserving agricultural genetic resources and their sustainable use was widely recognized at the end of the last millennium. There is also recognition that the conservation of genetic diversity within the species depends on large effective population, that is populations that are preserved in situ conditions - in the case of varieties thus preserving in the production environment in which the varieties developed their distinctive properties. A number of recommendations aiming to preserve old varieties and return them back into the production have been developed at the international level. Measures aiming at conserving plant genetic resources and prevent genetic erosion have been allready introduced in laws and policies of Slovenia. Measures to preserve the diversity on agricultural production will need to be further strengthened, and their implementation supported by a solid basis for recognising endangered plant species and varieties. So far in Slovenia in agriculture only basis for diagnosing threats to local breeds of domestic animals have been prepared, while such bases for plant varieties do not exist. List of endangered varieties has so far been prepared according to the assessment of professional services at Agriculture Ministry and served or serves primarily for the purpose of implementation of the Rural Development Programme.    The problem is also difficult identification of many old varieties due to a number of synonyms and homonyms. In such cases, DNA marker systems in combination with the morphological and biological properties are very useful for the identification and differentiation of varieties. They have been in Slovenia so far successfully used in identifikaciio of old varieties of figs, olives and vinegrapes. Old varieties of apple trees, which are the most widespread fruit in Slovenia, has so far not been genetically identified.   Nevertheless, the awareness about the importance of preserving old varieties of agricultural crops in the society is high, producers and consumers are often not familiar with these varieties. To increase the production of local varieties, especially those that are threatened by genetic erosion, it is necessary to assess their value for cultivation and use, optimize the production technology to evaluate their nutritional value, make recommendations for ways of useing and enhance the knowledge on these varieties among producers and consumers.   The potential of the old varieties can often be exploited only in certain, usually less intensive production technology. Also, production costs of old varieties are often higher due to lower yields. It is necessary to develop different ways of preparing for the market and marketing in which it would be possible to sell the products at higher price because of their special quality. The project aims to contribute to a more detailed understanding of the potential and value of local varieties and thus to their recognition, greater interest in them by consumers and, consequently, increased volumes of production. Therefore, we will: - Try to identify the terms that are used in conjunction with local varieties, and further define them. - Analyze the extent of the production of local varieties, develop criteria for the determination of threats t
Significance for science
Research related to the conservation and characterization of local varieties of crops have been identified as important support for the prevention of loss of diversity in agricultural production. With the development of tools for assessing the genetic diversity and genetic erosion science helps directing measures for conservation of biodiversity. With the help of molecular DNA markers varieties and clones can be successfully identified, the genetic diversity acan be studied and the origin and relations of varieties determined. Through research of nutritional and organoleptic characteristics of varieties science helps at developing food products of better quality and contributes to better health.   Through the genotyping of old varieties of apples research within the proposed project will contribute to better understanding of diversity and relations between old varietis and thereby prepare the ground for effective preservation of apple genetic diversity. The results of the studies could also be serve at determing plants for the purpose of reproduction.   The research of value for production, use and nutrition of local varieties will yield important information about the value and potential of genetically diverse materials of local varieties and contribute to recognising the importance of genetic diversity in crops.
Significance for the country
The results of the project will directly support expert services of the ministry for agriculture at the preparation, implementation and monitoring of the implementation of measures related to the protection of endangered local varieties of plants as well as in the wider protection of plant genetic resources in agriculture.   Information on the requirements and characteristics of local varieties which are threatened by genetic erosion, will be directly useful for: - Growers and agricultural advisors in the selection of varieties and production planning and at the development of products quality schemes. - Consumers as a support in the selection of locally grown food.   Increased interest in the cultivation of local varieties will contribute significantly to increasing interest in seed production of local varieties, which will have a direct impact on the profitability of agricultural production and will provide opportunities for further development of smaller seed companies.   In terms of the economy, genetic typing and identification of synonyms of old varieties of apple trees, is important as well since it will provide the basis for selection of the reference plants for the purpose of reproduction.
Most important scientific results Annual report 2016, 2018, final report
Most important socioeconomically and culturally relevant results Annual report 2016, 2018, final report
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