During calendar 1988, 3349 seed samples were supplied in response to 215 requests (letters or phone calls). The corresponding figures for 1987 were 2270 seed samples and 184 requests. Last year was a record year both for the volume of seed samples provided and the number of requests and other inquiries. It is not yet clear whether these increased numbers represent a transition to a higher continuing level of stock distribution.
During the past summer, several hundred families were devoted to seed increase of A-A reciprocal translocations. Because most of these stocks have good agronomic quality, they resulted in generally satisfactory increases. In addition, there were extensive plantings of genetic stocks involving chromosomes 1, 2, 3 and 4 that will require repeat plantings since their reduced vigor was insufficient to cope with severe drouth conditions in spite of repeated irrigation.
In observation plantings, good pedigree information was obtained especially from testcrosses of inversions and reciprocal translocations, from allelism tests and from seedling tests in greenhouse sandbenches.
Following Dr. Fletcher's departure from the Stock Center program at the beginning of last summer, we have been operating without backup professional support. However, we expect to employ professionally and technically qualified personnel as replacement by spring. We hope this will permit us to give renewed attention to re-evaluating the individual components in the total stock collection with a view to improving the selection and quality of the inventory. In addition, we plan to seek seed increases of the numerous stocks of symbolized new genes that have been assembled in the past several years in order that these valuable items may be added to future stock listings.
Each year several dozen samples representing uncharacterized, untested, unidentified newly-acquired traits are received for potential inclusion in our stock collection. As a result, we now have numerous different phenotypic categories, each including several items, that are awaiting further evaluation and testing. We will be happy to provide initial small seed source samples to those of you who have a special interest in studying specific types of mutants and are willing to conduct the allelism testing or chromosome location required to identify new loci.
E. B. Patterson
S-116 Turner Hall
University of Illinois
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