BAMLINK - A CROSS DISCIPLINARY PROGRAMME TO ENHANCE THE ROLE OF BAMBARA GROUNDNUT (VIGNA SUBTERRANEA L. VERDC.) FOR FOOD SECURITY IN AFRICA AND INDIA
The successful development of any underutilized crop requires a multidisciplinary approach. BAMLINK, the third EU-funded project on bambara groundnut (Vigna subterranea L. Verdc.), spans research from molecular genetics through field evaluation to product development incorporating end-user needs. Partners include four African, three Indian, and three European institutions that are evaluating the crop for both drought-prone African environments, where it is currently cultivated, and for potential new production environments in India. Underpinning this effort is a genetic analysis of the species. This is not only for specific agronomic traits but also in terms of domestication history and to establish the existing genetic structure available within cultivated and wild material that could be used for breeding. We present data on the underlying genetic structure of bambara groundnut and initial results from Diversity Arrays Technique (DArT) and Massively Parallel Signature Sequencing (MPSS) to investigate changes in gene expression under drought. We also describe microsatellite development, genetic mapping, and QTL analysis in a cross derived from a cultivated landrace and a wild relative. Underpinning all BAMLINK research is an analysis of domesticated bambara groundnut landraces from contrasting environments. The subsequent need to evaluate and accommodate the genetic variability which exists between genotypes of the same landrace in any phenotypic evaluation of that landrace is discussed. Genetic research is presented within an approach that integrates physiology, agronomy, nutrition, modelling, and end-user preferences to identify and overcome bottle-necks to further exploitation of this crop so that the full food security potential of bambara groundnut, especially for water-scarce environments, can be evaluated.
Mayes, S., Basu, S., Murchie, E., Roberts , J.A., Azam-Ali, S.N., Stadler, F., Mohler, V., Wenzel, G., Massawe, F., Kilian, A., Bonin, A., Beena, A. and Sheshshayee, M.S. (2009). BAMLINK - A CROSS DISCIPLINARY PROGRAMME TO ENHANCE THE ROLE OF BAMBARA GROUNDNUT (VIGNA SUBTERRANEA L. VERDC.) FOR FOOD SECURITY IN AFRICA AND INDIA. Acta Hortic. 806, 137-150
underutilized crops, genetic mapping, genetic diversity, crop breeding