Centre for Plant Genetics and Breeding

Research Project Examples

Most of our activities are focused on research into improving knowledge of and uses for legumes, and to that end we regularly publish our research results, including those from the work of our partner organisations.

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With a particular focus on genetic analysis, The International Centre for Plant Genetics and Breeding has begun and planned many projects that will provide new ways of harnessing the potential of various crops in Australian conditions.

Project Title: Introduction of short duration pulses into rice-based cropping systems in western Bangladesh


Summary: The project aims to reinvigorate pulse production in Bangladesh by fitting short duration pulses (lentil, mungbean and pea) into new cropping niches within the rice-based system in western Bangladesh to improve food and nutritional security.


Donor: Australian Centre for International Agriculture Research (ACIAR)

Partners:  International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), Bangladesh Agricultural Research Institute (BARI), International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA) and Pulse Breeding Australia (PBA)

Contact Scientists: Dr Imran Al MalikProf William Erskine

 Bangladesh Project


Project Title: Seeds of Life (SOL3): Improved food security through increased productivity of major food crops in East Timor.


Summary: Seeds of Life (SoL) is a program within the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries (MAF) which assists the identification of productive staple food-crop varieties suited to local conditions, the development of a seed system, multiplication of planting material of improved varieties to feed into the system and strengthening of the institutional capacity for the seed system to become self-sustaining in the future. 


Donor: Seeds of Life is a program within the Timor-Leste (East Timor) Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries (MAF). The Governments of Timor-Leste and Australia collaboratively fund the program.  Australian funding is through the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) plus the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) and is managed by ACIAR.  PGB coordinates the Australian funded activities. 

Contact Scientists: Prof William Erskine



Seeds of Life Video


 Seeds of Life Project


Project Title: Exploiting Subterranean Clover Genetic Variation for Methane Mitigation & Ruminant Health Challenges to the Australian Livestock Industries


Summary: The project aims to define the genetic control of two important traits in subterranean clover to tackle future challenges for Australian livestock industries: methanogenic activity and isoflavone content.


Donors: Australian Research Council (ARC) and West Australia Department of Agriculture & Food (DAFWA)

Partners:  DAFWA, Kazusa DNA Research Institute, Murdoch University

Contact Scientists: Dr Parwinder KaurProf William Erskine


Exploiting Subterranean Clover Project


Project Title: In vitro tools for accelerated breeding and screening for abiotic stress in grain legumes


Summary: The project aims to develop technology to accelerate the breeding of pulse crops (lupin, chickpea, field pea and lentil) by making it possible to turnover 5-6 generations per year. To provide screening for key abiotic constraints as part of the technology.


Donors: Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC)

Partners:  Pulse Breeding Australia (PBA)

Contact Scientists: Dr Janine Croser, Dr Fede Ribalta, Prof William Erskine

 Grain Legume Project


Project Title: Genetics of wild germplasm, gene-pool expansion and integrated SSD approach to enhance adaptive potential in chickpea


Summary: This project pursue the improvement of cultivated Australian chickpeas (Cicer arietinum L.) through the introduction of gene-traits associated to adaptation and yield from wild chickpea germplasm. The main objective is to generate discrete and multi-parental populations for the introduction of a wide range of alleles into the Australian - apapted chickpea cultivars. It is a collaborative effort between Curtin University and the University of Western Australia and it is linked to CSIRO-GRDC and UC-Davis


Donor: Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC)

Partners:  UWA / Curtin University project

Contact Scientists: Dr Janine Croser, Dr Maria Pazos-Navarro




Project Title: Pre-breeding of annual legumes


Summary: Within the project to pre-breed of annual legumes, UWA will develop in vitro tools to reduce cultivar development time and identify molecular markers for key agro-morphological traits in subterranean clover


Donors: Meat & Livestock Australia (MLA)/ WA Department of Agriculture & Food (DAFWA)

Partners:  WA Department of Agriculture & Food (DAFWA)

Contact Scientists: Dr Parwinder KaurDr Janine CroserProf William Erskine



Project Title: Improved subterranean clover seed production for multiple disease resistance


Summary: This project will identify new genes and Quantitative Trait Loci (QTLs) for resistances to the most important foliar and root rot diseases of subterranean clover and deliver molecular markers closely linked to them for use in breeding programs.


Donors: Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation (RIRDC)

Partners:  WA Department of Agriculture & Food (DAFWA)

Contact Scientists: Prof Martin Barbetti, Dr Parwinder KaurProf William Erskine




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Last updated:
Thursday, 17 March, 2016 9:34 AM