The main aim of the project is to increase the rate of establishment of Milicia excelsa seeds and/or seedlings by 20% by selection of genotypes with improved resistance to local stress factors in three principal climatic zones in West Africa. This will be achieved by fulfilling three specific objectives :
* To identify Milicia excelsa genotypes with improved resistance to matric stress.
* To identify Milicia excelsa genotypes with improved resistance to local soil borne pathogen populations.
* To identify Milicia excelsa genotypes with increased resistance to attack by Phytolyma lata.
The main result expected is the identification of M. excelsa genotypes which show 20% higher establishment rates then the average of 50 genotypes collected from five sites in three contrasting ecological zones. One superior genotype is expected to be identified for each of the three ecological zones.
It is expected that selected Milicia excelsa genotypes will be used in afforestation programmes based on novel knowledge about genotype characteristics, nursery seedling production and site preparation requirements (light, drainage, disease, and pest control).
The main developmental result expected is the establishment of 'state-of-the-art' molecular biology and biochemistry research facilities in West Africa, staffed with West Africans trained under this project. This will allow DC partners to continue research into genetic resource management and biochemical analysis of valuable secondary plant metabolites.
* Produce genetic fingerprints of 50 M. excelsa genotypes collected from five different sites in three ecological zones in West Africa.
* Examine the resistance of the M. exclesa genotypes to biotic stress factors in five field sites : (1) resistance to matric stress and root diseases during germination; (2) seedling resistance to matric stress, soil borne root diseases and Phytolyma attack; (3) effect of light conditions on seedling resistance to stress factors; (4) isolation and identification of soil borne diseases attacking seeds and seedlings of M. excelsa.
* Quantify the resistance of M. excelsa genotypes to matric stress and specific damping-off fungi in glasshouse trials.
* Identify resistance compounds in genotypes of Milica excelsa.
Funding SchemeCSC - Cost-sharing contracts
8260 AG Kampen