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A set of 286 recombinant inbred lines (RILs) along with the parents and a popular wheat variety in India were grown for two consecutive years at three locations belonging to the two major wheat growing zones of India and evaluated for four grain quality traits. Rare recombinants with high trait value appeared for protein content (PC), thousand-kernel weight (TKW), sedimentation value (SV), and kernel hardness (KH). The magnitude of environmental effects was more pronounced than genotypic effects and genotype-environment interaction (GEI). The cumulative contribution of environment and GEI components to the total variance was highest in the expression of PC followed by TKW, SV, and KH. The top five percent (14 RILs) of genotypes with high trait value were subjected to Eberhart and Russell (1966) (ER), genotype and genotype-environment (GGE) and additive main effects and multiplicative interaction (AMMI) stability models. Five RILs were identified as stable in all the three stability models. RIL61 with 38.8%, RIL101 with 8.9%, RIL226 with 26.1% superiority over check variety were the most stable genotypes in all the three stability models for PC, TKW and KH, respectively. RIL113 was found to be stable genotype in ER and GGE models, whereas, RIL231 was the most stable genotype in AMMI and GGE models in the expression of SV. These common stable genotypes with high trait value identified through ER, AMMI and GGE models could be potential donors in active breeding programs to develop high yielding wheat varieties with improved PC, TKW, SV and KH.

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Selection on the basis of grain yield per se for improved performance under excessive moisture stress has often been misleading and considered inefficient. We assessed the importance of secondary traits of adaptive value under waterlogging stress. During the 2000–2004 summer-rainy seasons twelve trials were conducted and a total of 436 tropical/subtropical inbred lines (S 4 –S n ) were evaluated under excessive soil moisture stress. Excessive moisture treatment was applied at V 6–7 growth stage by flooding the experimental plots continuously for seven days. Different phenological and physiological parameters were recorded before, during and either immediately or 1–2 weeks after exposure to stress. Excessive moisture conditions significantly affected all the morphological and physiological traits studied. However, there was significant genetic variability for various traits, especially for root porosity and brace root development that were induced under excessive moisture. Across the trials, significant genetic correlations (p<0.01) was obtained between grain yield and different secondary traits, including ears per plant, root porosity, brace root fresh weight, number of nodes with brace roots and anthesis silking interval. Broad-sense heritability decreased under excessive moisture stress conditions for most of the traits; however, it increased significantly for root porosity, nodal root development and ears per plant. Our findings suggest that consideration of these second-ary traits during selection of maize germplasm for excessive moisture tolerance can improve selection efficiency and genetic gains.

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Cereal Research Communications
Authors: S. Sareen, R. Munjal, N. Singh, B. Singh, R. Verma, B. Meena, J. Shoran, A. Sarial and S. Singh

Terminal heat, which is referred as increase in temperature during grain filling, is one of the important stress factors for wheat production. Current estimates indicate that wheat crop grown on around 13.5mha in India is affected by heat stress. In order to meet the challenges of high temperature ahead of global warming, concerted efforts are needed to evaluate germplasm for heat tolerance and identify and develop genotypes suitable for such stressed environments. The advanced wheat genotypes developed for stress and normal environments by different research centers were evaluated across 7 locations representing varied agroclimatic zones during 2007–08 and 2008–09 to study their adaptability for heat stress and non-stress environments. The additive main effects and multiplicative interaction analysis for G × E interactions revealed differences amongst locations to phenology and grain yield. Genotype RAJ 4083 developed for cultivation under late sown conditions in peninsular zone was also found adaptable to timely sown conditions. Similarly, HD 2733 a cultivar of NEPZ timely sown conditions and PBW 574 an advanced breeding line of NWPZ late sown conditions was found adapted to Peninsular zone. The cultivar RAJ 3765 showed specific adaptability to Pantnagar in NWPZ. Genotype NW 3069 developed for NEPZ timely sown conditions have shown adaptability to number of locations; timely sown conditions at Karnal and Hisar in NWPZ and Niphad in PZ. Likewise, WH 1022 developed for NEPZ late sown conditions exhibited specific adaptability to all timely sown locations in NWPZ.

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Sunflower (PSH 569) was used to obtain textured defatted meal. Proximate analysis, water absorption index (WAI), water solubility index (WSI), fat absorption capacities (FAC), foaming capacity (FC), and bulk density (BD) were determined. The objective of the study was the optimization of extrusion conditions for production of textured defatted sunflower meal using response surface methodology (RSM) by evaluating functional properties. It was dried, grinded, and sieved to eliminate hull and fibre. Numerical optimization provided eight solutions with desirability value varying from 0.81 to 0.82. Range of predicted values of FAC (80.96–90.49), WHC (1.95–2.12), WSI (3.22–3.36), WAI (2.84–3.08), bulk density (0.31–0.36), and foaming capacity (14.39–16.30) were used for numerical optimization. Best extrusion conditions were 16.36% feed moisture, 300 r.p.m. screw speed, and 149.40 °C barrel temperature. Textured sunflower defatted meal was prepared using the above optimized conditions.

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Abstract  

A simple technique based on the measurement of the ratio of alpha-decay constant to neutron induced fission cross section for pure actinides using solid state nuclear track detectors (SSNTDs) is developed for the identification of the actinides in trace levels in pure solutions. The alpha-decay constant to fission cross section ratios for depleted U,238Pu and240Pu have been measured for the epicadmium neutron induced fission of these actinides. The measured values are (6.19±0.34)·106, (6.95±0.26)·1012, (2.12±0.95)·109 and (2.18±1.58)·1011 sec−1·cm−2, respectively. These ratios can be used for the trace level identification of pure actinides.

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Abstract  

Tracer diffusion of131I ions is studied at different temperatures /20°C–50°C/ in 2.5% agar gel containing sodium and potassium sulphate solutions over a wide range of concentrations. The results are in qualitative agreement with the theoretical values in the concentration range 10–6–10–1M. Agar gel shows an obstruction effect to diffusional flow. The activation energy for tracer diffusion was found to be of the order of 16.3 kJ mol–1.

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A new wheat variety resistant to cereal cyst nematode (CCN), CCNRV 1 (Raj Molya Rodhak 1), was developed from two genetically diverse cultivars in a single cross (J 24/AUS 15854). This variety exhibited a higher level of productivity in both CCN-infested and normal soils, with increases in the grain and straw yields of 78.7% and 60.1%, respectively, over Raj 3077 in infested soils. It also gave 19.0% higher yield than local varieties under timely-sown irrigated conditions in normal soils. It possesses superior grain quality along with other desirable agronomic traits. Genetically it carries a dominant gene for CCN resistance. It is a robust and reliable wheat variety that offers a high degree of resistance against nematodes in warmer areas of Rajasthan. It was recommended for timely-sown, irrigated conditions in CCN-infested areas of Rajasthan by the State Seed Sub-Committee on Crop Standards, Notification and Release of Varieties in September 2002. It is envisaged that this variety will help to boost wheat production and alleviate the socio-economic problems of subsistent Indian farmers in CCN-infested areas.

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Drought and high temperature are two major factors limiting crop production. The two stresses occur together in many regions of the world but they usually are investigated separately. Irrespective of the genotype, growth or treatment conditions, grain growth was severely reduced when wheat plants were exposed to high temperature, drought and combination of both the stresses during endosperm cell division. The extent of thermal as well as drought induced disruption of grain development, however was dependent on genotype. This structural data support the hypothesis that high temperature and drought during endosperm cell division reduces grain sink potential and subsequently mature grain mass, mainly by disrupting cell divisions in peripheral and central endosperm and thus reducing endosperm length and breadth to a considerable extent. The interaction of high temperature and drought stresses resulted in stronger reduction of pericarp thickness and endosperm size than either stress alone.

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Bipolaris sorokiniana (Sacc.) Shoemaker (Teleomorph: Cochliobolus sativus (Ito and Kuribayashi) Drechs. Ex. Dastur) is a serious necrotrophic pathogen of wheat and barley in several countries. In this paper we report on mechanism of resistance and histopathological changes that occur on pathogen attack in resistant and susceptible genotypes. Callose deposition was observed in the epidermal cell wall of resistant genotype, Pusa T3336 at 2DAI. Lignin deposition around mesophyll tissues was also strongly observed by Phloroglucinol-HCl test in Pusa T3336. Four days after inoculation (4DAI), the pathogen colonized the leaf tissues showing inter and intracellular hyphae in susceptible genotype, Agralocal. In resistant genotype, no colonization was observed. The host tissue in susceptible genotype showed degeneration away from the site of colonization and also showed loss of structural integrity thereby indicating the role of toxin in pathogenesis. Separation of plasmalemma from the cell wall was observed due to loss of electrolytes and degradation of chloroplast at 5 DAI in the susceptible genotypes was prominently seen through light microscopy.

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Diploid wheat T. monococcum L. is a model plant for wheat functional genomics. A soft glume mutant was identified during manual screening of EMS-treated M2 progenies of a T. monococcum accession pau14087. The seeds in the mature spike of the mutant could be easily threshed manually. The soft glume mutant with high sterility, tapering and broader spikes had also tougher rachis than the wild type parent. Genetic analysis of crosses of the mutant with wild type indicated that the mutant was monogenic recessive. To map the soft glume mutant, a mapping population was developed by crossing the soft glume mutant with wild Triticum boeoticum acc. pau 5088, having tough glumes and hard threshing. The soft glume mutant was mapped between SSR markers Xgwm473 and Xbarc69 on 7AmL chromosome of T. monococcum, with a genetic distance of 1.8 cM and 8.3 cM, respectively. The soft glum mutant mapped on 7AmL, being distinct from a previously mapped soft glume mutant in wheat, has been designated as sog2. The work on fine mapping of sog2 gene is in progress.

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