In South America livestock feeding rely mainly on grazing systems and therefore grassland productivity determines livestock production. Pastures incorporating legumes have higher productivity and nutritional value for livestock production. In the Southern Cone of Latin America over 45 M hectares of pastures could be improved using forage legumes. Among legumes forage Lotus species have greater potential for adaptation to environmentally-constrained areas of Latin America. Breeding and selection for toleranc e to abiotic stresses is restricted by the reproduction system of cultivated Lotus and the complexity of physiological and metabolic responses involved. LOTASSA will take advantage of the close relatedness among forage Lotus species and the model legume Lo tus japonicus to develop new and specific resources to assist and speed up breeding and selection of Lotus genotyes with improved adaptation to abiotic stresses (water, salt and pH stess). LOTASSA will simult. provide inoculant rhizobial strains to guarant ee optimal nitrogen fixation by Lotus pastures in constrained soils. LOTASSA will characterize at the phenotypic and genotypic levels existing plant genetic resources (cultivated and model Lotus) and will develop new genotypes with superior abiotic stress tolerance. The model Z. japonicus will be used to identify molecular markers associated to stress tolerance that will be later tested in forage Lotus species of interest. Global genomic and metabolic responses of Lotus to abiotic stresses will be determine d. The role of certain genes and particular metabolic pathways in the tolerance of Lotus to those stresses will be assessed. Biochemical and genetic markers for Lotus tolerance to abiotic stresses will be identified and their validity tested in mapping pop ulations of forage Lotus. To optimise nitrogen fixation by Lotus LOTASSA will isolate, characterise and select highly-performing, stress-tolerant bacterial strains for each forage Lutus spp.
Call for proposal
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Funding SchemeSTIP - Specific Targeted Innovation Project
Chascomús, Provincia De Buenos Aires