USDA/ARS/MWA - Plant Physiology and Genetics Research Unit
University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign - Department of Crop Sciences
1102 South Goodwin Avenue
Urbana, IL 61801-4798
(217) 333-6064 [fax]
1988 seed samples have been supplied in response to 279 requests, for 1998. Of these, a total of 63 requests were received from 20 foreign countries. Approximately three fourths of our requests were received by electronic mail or through our order form on the World-Wide Web.
With the help of Mary Polacco and Denis Hancock a new web-based query form has been developed to search for stocks of interest in our collection. This query form is available at http://www.agron.missouri.edu/cgi-bin/sybgw_mdb/mdb3/StockMGSC/query
We have also listed a new ‘Phenotype Only’ category of stocks. These are stocks that have been donated to the COOP over the years, and have been classified according to their mutant phenotype only. For the most part, these stocks have not as yet been allele tested, nor has their gene been located to a chromosome arm. While we expect that most of these will represent new alleles of known loci, some will represent unique, as yet undescribed loci. Over the past few years, some mutants in this class have been mapped and/or allele tested and where appropriate, the now characterized mutant stock was added to our main catalog. We are now listing all of these mutants to give cooperators that are interested in specific traits, easier access to these mutants. Many of the stocks recently donated to us by Gerry Neuffer will be placed in this class, as we grow them up.
Approximately 5 acres of nursery were grown this summer at the Crop Sciences Research & Education Center located at the University of Illinois. Despite the wet spring weather, we had good stands and obtained good increases of most stocks grown this year.
Special plantings were made of several categories of stocks:
1. Approximately 1.5 acres was devoted to the vast mutant collection of Gerry Neuffer with special attention also given to the collection of mutants that we have obtained from Donald Robertson. We have made good progress in increasing the Neuffer collection, and have almost completed our initial increase of the Robertson collection.
2. Plantings were also made from donated stocks from the collections of James Birchler (marked B-A translocation stocks), Ed Coe (various genetic stocks), Jerry Kermicle (R1 alleles), Michael McMullen (Brink pericarp color collection), Donald Miles (high chlorophyll fluorescence mutants), Gerry Neuffer (EMS-induced mutants), and others. We expect to receive additional accessions of stocks from maize geneticists within the upcoming year.
3. We also made a special planting of characterized unplaced mutants to map to chromosome arm using B-A translocations. We were able to confirm the map locations of the mutants luteus3, orobanche2 piebald4, virescent13, viviparous10, and lemon white2-vp12 with a high degree of certainty, and made a tentative placement of y11 (see MNL article on our TB mapping results). We plan to continue this mapping project next summer.
4. We conducted allelism tests of several categories of mutants with similar phenotype or chromosome location. We found additional alleles of albescent1, green stripe1, green stripe2, lazy1, lemon white1, lemon white2, shrunken4, viviparous9, white sheath3, yellow endosperm1, and zebra necrotic2. In this manner, we are hoping to move stocks from our vast collection of unplaced uncharacterized mutants and integrate them into the main collection.
5. Approximately 1 acre each year is devoted to the propagation of the large collection of A-A translocation stocks. In this collection is a series of waxy1-linked translocations that are used for mapping unplaced mutants. Over the years, pedigree and classification problems arose during the propagation of these stocks. We were able to sort through the problem ones, and we can now supply good sources proven by linkage tests to include the correct translocated chromosomes. Additional translocation stocks are now being tested.
We continue to grow a winter nursery of 0.5 acres at the Illinois Crop Improvement Association’s facilities in Juana Díaz, Puerto Rico. We had an excellent winter crop last year, and all indications are that the crop will perform well this year as well, despite the passage of Hurricane Georges over Puerto Rico. We plan to continue growing our winter nurseries at this location.
We anticipate hiring an additional Research Specialist who will be responsible for the new stocks generated by the NSF project "Maize Gene Discovery, Sequencing and Phenotypic Analysis", in which we are involved along with Virginia Walbot and others in the maize community. We anticipate that this and other projects recently funded by the NSF Plant Genome Program, will greatly enhance our collection along with greatly increasing our understanding of maize as a biological organism.
We would like to make
a special plea for cooperators to donate their genetic stocks and mutants
to the Stock Center in a timely manner. What often happens is that people
publish on these mutants, and then forget about them. Seeds sit around
at room temperature and lose viability, or get eaten by insects and mice,
or even get discarded. These mutants are lost forever, and the research
that was done on them can never be replicated or followed up. Please, as
soon as you have published on your mutant, send seeds to the Stock Center.
Do this now, before you forget.
Senior Research Specialist
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