The dawn of a new era for genebanks – molecular characterisation of an entire genebank collection

Biodiversity goes beyond species diversity. Another important aspect of biodiversity is genetic variation within species. A notable example is the immense variety of cultivars and landraces of crop plants and their wild progenitors. An international research consortium led by the of the IPK Gatersleben and supported by the iDiv research centre has now characterised at the molecular level a world collection of barley comprising seed samples from a total of more than 22,000 varieties. In a study published in the journal Nature Genetics, the scientists usher in a new era for gene banks that transform from museums of past crop diversity into bio-digital resource centres. (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)