Source: VIRGINIA POLYTECHNIC INSTITUTE submitted to
SOYBEAN IMPROVEMENT VIA CLASSICAL AND MOLECULAR APPROACHES FOR VIRGINIA AND THE MID-ATLANTIC REGION
Sponsoring Institution
National Institute of Food and Agriculture
Project Status
TERMINATED
Funding Source
Reporting Frequency
Annual
Accession No.
0213914
Grant No.
(N/A)
Project No.
VA-135839
Proposal No.
(N/A)
Multistate No.
(N/A)
Program Code
(N/A)
Project Start Date
Jul 1, 2008
Project End Date
Sep 30, 2011
Grant Year
(N/A)
Project Director
Rainey, K. M.
Recipient Organization
VIRGINIA POLYTECHNIC INSTITUTE
(N/A)
BLACKSBURG,VA 24061
Performing Department
CROP AND SOIL ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE
Non Technical Summary
Soybean is a major U.S crop and export commodity. In 2006 the U.S. soybean crop value was 20 billion dollars and about 1 billion bushels were exported. New and versatile uses of soybean as soy foods, animal feeds, and industrial and pharmaceutical products create demand for soybeans, soybean meal, and soybean oil domestically and worldwide. Soybeans are grown on half a million acres in Virginia, and annually are worth around 100 million dollars in the state. Soybeans are planted on more acres in Virginia than any other field crop, and the value of production is similar to corn. Because of its importance to national and commonwealth agricultural security, continual research efforts must be directed at improving the efficiency and sustainability of soybean production. A soybean breeding program is an integral part of improving the efficiency and sustainability of soybean production, due to the need for cultivars that (a) have superior yield potential (i.e., enhance yield response in favorable production environments or mitigate yield depression arising from unfavorable abiotic factors) (b) are resistant or tolerant to recurrent and newly emerging soybean diseases (i.e., viral, bacterial, and fungal) and pests (i.e., nematodes and insects), and (c) have altered soybean seed composition in ways that add value and competitiveness to the crop. In addition to cultivar development, there is a need to learn more about the basic biology of the crop, to invest in long-term breeding objectives, and to characterize the inheritance of various traits. This information is useful to soybean breeders and others who are interested in improving the crop and understanding its basic biology, and germplasm resulting from such efforts is freely available. Breeding programs can incorporate or enhance economically valuable output traits into soybean, especially seed composition traits, which raise the value of whole soybeans, soybean oil, and soybean meal. This helps U.S. soybean producers maintain profit margin and demand for U.S. soybeans in the export market, despite increased competition due to expanded soybean production in Brazil and other parts of South America. Improved seed composition traits in this program include modified fatty acid content (FA) in the oil, increased protein and oil content, increased sucrose and other soy food quality traits, and reduced stachyose, raffinose, and phytic acid.
Animal Health Component
40%
Research Effort Categories
Basic
20%
Applied
40%
Developmental
40%
Classification

Knowledge Area (KA)Subject of Investigation (SOI)Field of Science (FOS)Percent
2011820108015%
2021820108015%
2031820108015%
2041820108015%
2111820108010%
2121820108015%
2131820108015%
Goals / Objectives
Objective 1, to develop high-yielding soybean cultivars adapted to the climatic and edaphic conditions and cultural practices in Virginia, the mid-Atlantic, and Southeast region that are herbicide tolerant, lower cost of production, and possess resistance to economically important disease and pests. Objective 2, develop superior germplasm or cultivars with modified oil quality, higher protein content, enhanced quality for food, and other high value traits. Objective 3, adapt new technologies to enhance the effectiveness of plant breeding, in particular MAS and obtain new information on soybean genetics and breeding. Outputs. Activities. Participation in multiple regional yield trials of soybean from the Southeastern region, including growing approximately 1000 yield plots per year for multi-environment testing of elite soybean varieties. Organizing a regional trial for food-grade soybeans. Teaching and mentoring graduate and undergraduate students. Training new plant breeders, counteracting a projected deficit of applied plant breeders in coming years. Events. Contributing to biennial Virginia Soybean field days. Products. Creation of populations from which to select soybean varieties with superior combinations of traits and high yields, and creation of genetic populations for characterizing and mapping economically important traits soybean. Genetic improvement of soybean for adaptation to the Mid-Atlantic and Southeastern regions and resistance to economically important diseases of these areas. Contribution of applied and basic scientific knowledge of soybean genetics and breeding. Release of improved varieties of soybean.
Project Methods
Genetic improvement of soybean for multiple agronomic and high-value traits is conducted using several approaches. Populations are created via artificial hybridization of elite parents. Segregating populations are rapidly inbred prior to trait evaluation using modified single seed descent. Winter nurseries are used to speed up the process. When possible, marker-assisted selection based on molecular genotypes is used in early generations. Four to five generations after hybridization, superior plant families are selected for seed increase and yield testing, Superior lines are evaluated for traits in multiple environments (locations and years). Results are analyzed using standard statistical methods, primarily ANOVA. Yield, seed composition, maturity, adaptation, biotic and abiotic stress tolerance are measured by comparison to known control varieties. Lines are released if they possess unique combinations of improved traits. Variety development objectives are determined by communication with stakeholders including growers, exporters, and processors. Success of the project will be evaluated by variety and germplasm release and adoption, within the timeline stated in the project.

Progress 07/01/08 to 09/30/11

Outputs
OUTPUTS: OUTPUTS: Activities. Teaching: CSES 4144, Advanced Plant Breeding and Genetics, 15 students, 3 credit hours. Experiments analyzed: Cooperative tests: 1069 plots in 20 experiments. Advanced yield tests: 897 plots in 5 experiments. Preliminary yield tests: 1,072 plots in 17 yield tests. Number of samples processed for marker-assisted selection: 4,966. Two on-farm tests of potential varieties were conducted on approximately 15 acres in two counties. Mentoring: two Ph.D. students, one M.S., and two undergraduates. Events: ASA-CSSA-SSSA Annual Meeting (Pittsburgh, October 2009) attended by three students. Soybean Breeders' Workshop (St. Louis, Feb 2010) attended by the principal investigator, one technician and three students. Molecular and Cellular biology of the Soybean (Durham, August 2010) attended by the principal investigator, one technician and three students. Southern Soybean Breeders' Tour (So. Carolina, September 2010) attended by the principal investigator, two technicians, and two students. Products. PVP applications filed: two. Methods and Techniques: new HPLC seed composition assays developed, new genotyping assay developed. Students graduated in the agricultural sciences: one Ph.D. Dissemination: Dozens of advanced high yielding soybean experimental lines were been entered into regional cooperative tests for observation and use by other breeders. Six advanced lines were entered in state soybean open variety trials in TN, VA, MD, NC, MO, AK, and MS. Results of other experiments were reported at meetings. Updates on new varieties were presented to VA soybean growers. PARTICIPANTS: Individuals: Principal Investigator: Dr. Katy Martin Rainey Partners: USDA-ARS: Crop Genetics Research Unit, Stoneville, MS; Soybean Nitrogen Fixation Unit, Raleigh, NC. Researchers at the following universities: Univ. Arkansas, Univ. Missouri, Univ. Maryland, Univ. Tennessee TARGET AUDIENCES: Target audiences include soybean growers in Virginia and the Mid-Atlantic and plant breeders and geneticists and other researchers in plant physiology and pathology, and agronomy. Also, private sector seed companies. PARTICIPANTS: Not relevant to this project. TARGET AUDIENCES: Soybean growers in Virginia, Commercial seed companies. PROJECT MODIFICATIONS: Not relevant to this project.

Impacts
Soybean is a major U.S crop and export commodity. In 2006 the U.S. soybean crop value was 20 billion dollars and about 1 billion bushels were exported. New and versatile uses of soybean as soy foods, animal feeds, and industrial and pharmaceutical products create demand for soybeans, soybean meal, and soybean oil domestically and worldwide. Soybeans are grown on half a million acres in Virginia, and annually are worth around 100 million dollars in the state. Soybeans are planted on more acres in Virginia than any other field crop, and the value of production is similar to corn. Because of its importance to national and commonwealth agricultural security, continual research efforts must be directed at improving the efficiency and sustainability of soybean production. A soybean breeding program is an integral part of improving the efficiency and sustainability of soybean production, due to the need for cultivars that (a) have superior yield potential (i.e., enhance yield response in favorable production environments or mitigate yield depression arising from unfavorable abiotic factors) (b) are resistant or tolerant to recurrent and newly emerging soybean diseases (i.e., viral, bacterial, and fungal) and pests (i.e., nematodes and insects), and (c) have altered soybean seed composition in ways that add value and competitiveness to the crop. In addition to cultivar development, there is a need to learn more about the basic biology of the crop, to invest in long-term breeding objectives, and to characterize the inheritance of various traits. This information is useful to soybean breeders and others who are interested in improving the crop and understanding its basic biology, and germplasm resulting from such efforts is freely available. Breeding programs can incorporate or enhance economically valuable output traits into soybean, especially seed composition traits, which raise the value of whole soybeans, soybean oil, and soybean meal. This helps U.S. soybean producers maintain profit margin and demand for U.S. soybeans in the export market, despite increased competition due to expanded soybean production in Brazil and other parts of South America. Improved seed composition traits in this program include modified fatty acid content (FA) in the oil, increased protein and oil content, increased sucrose and other soy food quality traits, and reduced stachyose, raffinose, and phytic acid.

Publications

  • No publications reported this period


Progress 10/01/09 to 09/30/10

Outputs
OUTPUTS: Activities. Teaching: CSES 4144, Advanced Plant Breeding and Genetics, 15 students, 3 credit hours. Experiments analyzed: Cooperative tests: 1069 plots in 20 experiments. Advanced yield tests: 897 plots in 5 experiments. Preliminary yield tests: 1,072 plots in 17 yield tests. Number of samples processed for marker-assisted selection: 4,966. Two on-farm tests of potential varieties were conducted on approximately 15 acres in two counties. Mentoring: two Ph.D. students, one M.S., and two undergraduates. Events: ASA-CSSA-SSSA Annual Meeting (Pittsburgh, October 2009) attended by three students. Soybean Breeders' Workshop (St. Louis, Feb 2010) attended by the principal investigator, one technician and three students. Molecular and Cellular biology of the Soybean (Durham, August 2010) attended by the principal investigator, one technician and three students. Southern Soybean Breeders' Tour (So. Carolina, September 2010) attended by the principal investigator, two technicians, and two students. Products. PVP applications filed: two. Methods and Techniques: new HPLC seed composition assays developed, new genotyping assay developed. Students graduated in the agricultural sciences: one Ph.D. Dissemination: Dozens of advanced high yielding soybean experimental lines were been entered into regional cooperative tests for observation and use by other breeders. Six advanced lines were entered in state soybean open variety trials in TN, VA, MD, NC, MO, AK, and MS. Results of other experiments were reported at meetings. Updates on new varieties were presented to VA soybean growers. PARTICIPANTS: Individuals: Principal Investigator: Dr. Katy Martin Rainey Partners: USDA-ARS: Crop Genetics Research Unit, Stoneville, MS; Soybean Nitrogen Fixation Unit, Raleigh, NC. Researchers at the following universities: Univ. Arkansas, Univ. Missouri, Univ. Maryland, Univ. Tennessee TARGET AUDIENCES: Target audiences include soybean growers in Virginia and the Mid-Atlantic and plant breeders and geneticists and other researchers in plant physiology and pathology, and agronomy. Also, private sector seed companies. PROJECT MODIFICATIONS: Not relevant to this project.

Impacts
Change in Knowledge and Actions. The primary subject area for outcomes and impacts comes from research on the low phytate trait in soybean. Our work improves nutritional quality of soybeans and reduces environmental pollution from excess phosphorus. We also haven provided breeders with information on on how to breed low phytate soybeans successfully. New molecular markers and assays were generated, new information on breeding methodology, new assays for seed composition, and data on genetic control of the trait. We also demonstrated that variation exists within varieties for yield and quality traits which can can be used to establish quantitative introgression NILs for mapping regions of the genome associated with quantitative traits.

Publications

  • Rosso, M.L, S. Burleson, L. Maupin and K. Rainey. 2010. Development of Breeder Friendly Markers for Selection of a Novel Mutant Conditioning Low Phytate. In Proc. 13th Biennial Molecular and Cellular Biology of the Soybean Conference. Durham, NC, Aug 8-11, 2010.
  • K.M. Rainey, S. Tolin, A. Chin, and H. Taylor. 2009. Seed Coat Mottling in Food-Grade Soybean Cultivars in Response to Infection with BPMV and SMV. In Proc. ASA-CSSA-SSSA Annual Meeting, Pittsburgh, PA, Nov 1-5, 2009.
  • S. Burleson and K.M Rainey. 2009. Association of Inorganic Phosphorus with a Molecular Marker Linked to a Novel Low Phytate Mutation. In Proc. ASA-CSSA-SSSA Annual Meeting, Pittsburgh, PA, Nov 1-5, 2009.
  • Maupin, L.M., M.L. Rosso and K.M. Rainey. 2009. Characterization of novel low phytate and low stachyose germplasm for soybean breeding. November 2009, ASA-CSSA-SSSA Annual Meeting, Pittsburgh, PA.
  • Rainey, K.M. 2009. Multi-year analysis of breeding for no-till systems in the mid-Atlantic region. November 2009, ASA-CSSA-SSSA Annual Meeting, Pittsburgh, PA.
  • Burleson, S., and K.M. Rainey. 2009. Association of inorganic phosphorus with a molecular marker linked to a novel low phytate mutation. November 2009, ASA-CSSA-SSSA Annual Meeting, Pittsburgh, PA.
  • Rainey, K.M., S.A. Tolin, A. Chin, and H. Taylor. 2009. Seed coat mottling in food-grade soybean cultivars in response to infection with BPMV and SMV. November 2009, ASA-CSSA-SSSA Annual Meeting, Pittsburgh, PA.
  • M.L. Rosso, S. Burleson, L. Maupin and K. Rainey. 2010. Development of Breeder Friendly Markers for Selection of Low Phytate Soybeans. Molecular Breeding. Submitted.
  • M.L. Rosso, A. Vazquez, and K.M. Rainey. 2010 First report of soybean frogeye leaf spot caused by Cercospora sojina race 11 in Virginia. Plant Dis. Submitted.
  • L.M. Maupin, M.L. Rosso, C. Shang, S. Burleson, and K.M. Rainey. 2010. Evaluation of Emergence and Phosphorus Content of an Early Generation Soybean Population with Modified Phosphorus and Sugar Composition. Plant Breeding. Submitted.
  • L.M. Maupin., M.L. Rosso, C. Shang, and K.M. Rainey. 2010. Genotype x environment interaction and stability of phosphorus concentration across twelve environments in two soybean germplasm sources with modified phosphorus composition. Crop Sci. Submitted.
  • L.M. Maupin, M.L. Rosso, C. Shang, and K.M. Rainey. 2010. Seedling emergence of two soybean germplasm sources with modified phosphorus composition. Crop Sci. Submitted.
  • L.M. Maupin, M.L. Rosso, and K.M. Rainey. 2010. Environmental effects of soybean with modified phosphorus and sugar composition. Crop Sci. In Press. D.E. Cook, and
  • K.M.Rainey. 2010. Seed Coat Deficiency, Trait Stability, and Other Soybean Seed Quality Traits for Natto Cultivar Development. Crop Sci. 50:1-6.


Progress 10/01/08 to 09/30/09

Outputs
OUTPUTS: PRODUCTS: PVPs, Releases, Populations: Soybean germplasm release of 7 insect resistant lines. Germplasm releases represent the culmination of massive amounts of research and work. PVP application for Glenn soybeans granted. This confers a limited period of legal control to breeders which is key for VCIA, college, department, and program receipt of royalty funds. The PVP is a type of patent specifically for plant germplasm. Prepared and submitted a PVP application for MFS-541 soybeans, granted. In 09 we generated approximately 15 populations for the genetic study of germination and emergence of low phytate soybeans.*WORKSHOPS Saghai Maroof, M., K. Rainey. Feb 09. Stacking Soybean Meal Traits from Various Germplasm Sources. Better Bean Initiative Workshop, Feb 15, 09, St. Louis, MO. Audience: Industry. Scope: National. Reason: Invited. Audience: 40. *FIELD DAYS 09 Soybean Field Day - presentations on a variety of topics related to soybean research and production. Audience: Industry. Scope: In-state. Reason: Invited. Audience: 60. Comment: Group was responsible for 5 separate presentations.*POSTERS Burleson S., K. Rainey. Oct 09. Association of Inorganic Phosphorus with a Molecular Marker Linked to a Novel Low Phytate Mutation. ASA-CSSA-SSSA 09 International Annual Meetings. Pittsburg, PA. Tuesday, Nov 3, 09. Audience: Industry. Scope: International. Audience: 3000. Comments: Presented by a Masters student. Chin A., K. RAINEY, S. Tolin, H. Taylor. Oct 09. Seed Coat Mottling in Food-Grade Soybean Cultivars in Response to Infection with BPMV and SMV. ASA-CSSA-SSSA 09 Annual Meetings. Pittsburg, PA. Audience: Industry. Scope: International. Audience: 3000. Comments: This was a poster presented by an undergraduate researcher. *PRESENTATIONS Rainey, K.M., G.R. Buss, R. McPherson. 09. Breeding for Resistance to Stink Bugs: A Real-World Example. Invited presentation at the Soybean Breeder's Workshop, Feb 17 09, St. Louis, MO. Audience: Industry. Scope: International. Reason: Invited. Audience: 250. Rainey K. Feb 09. Rainey, K.M. Soybean Breeding Update 09. Virginia Seed Conference. Feb 19, Williamsburg, VA. Audience: Industry. Scope: In-state. Reason: Invited. Audience: 50. Maupin L., K. Rainey, M. Rosso. Oct 09. Characterization of Novel Low Phytate and Low Stachyose Germplasm for Soybean Breeding. ASA-CSSA-SSSA 09 International Annual Meetings. Pittsburg, PA. Tues, Nov 3, 09. Audience: Industry. Scope: International. *TEACHING The project conducted on-going training of 3 graduate students in 09. The project leader taught three guest lectures. Project leader organized a student group to read papers from the primary scientific literature for Spring Semester 09. PARTICIPANTS: Individuals: Katy Martin Rainey, P.D,; Tom Pridgen, Research Specialist; Laura Maupin, Graduate Student; Jody Fanelli, Research Assistant; Dr. Luciana Rosso; Research Assistant; Sarah Burleson, Graduate Student; Ted Lewis, Wage Employee , Lin Barrack, Farm Supervisor, Mary Beahm, Wage Employee Partner *COLLABORATORS AND CONTACTS: Dr. M.A. Saghai-Maroof, Dr. Carl Griffey, Dr. Sue Tolin, Dr. David Holshouser, Montague Farms, Inc., EVAREC, NAPREC, TAREC TARGET AUDIENCES: State and Regional Farmers, Soybean Breeders in the Public and Private sectors, Users of soybeans in the region and the Nation, Students of Plant Breeding, Crop Science, and genetics. PROJECT MODIFICATIONS: : Nothing significant to report during this reporting period.

Impacts
*Development of disease-resistant soybean cultivars. Relevance: Worldwide loss due to pathogens on all major crops is estimated to be in tens of billions of dollars annually. Response: Development of resistant crop plants is the most practical and environment-friendly solution for addressing disease problems.: We have conducted extensive research studying soybean resistance to virus diseases. Results: We have identified several genes controlling resistance to soybean mosaic virus and developed DNA markers to facilitate their incorporation into high-yielding soybean lines. *Improving nutritional quality and palatability of soybean for feed and food market. Relevance: Soybeans provide protein and oil to the food and animal feed industries and have been reported to have numerous health benefits. Also ,soybeans contain compounds such as undesirable sugars, which have anti-nutritional activities. Response: The CSES Soybean Genomics and Soybean Breeding programs are working to develop new soybean varieties containing higher levels of desirable sugars, more metabolizable energy and improved flavor and digestibility. This is being done through integrating DNA marker technology with conventional breeding, and feeding studies. Results: The availability of such value-added soybeans for domestic and export markets will enhance agricultural productivity and promote economic development. Farmers will receive higher prices for the improved soybeans, and domestic animal pollution will be reduced.*Development of an array of tools for soybean breeders to develop low phytate soybean cultivars. Relevance: Phytate, the main phosphorus storage compound for seeds, is the basis of several agricultural and environmental problems. Being indigestible to nonruminant animals, the compound robs P from their diet while also chelating important micronutrients. This poses a problem not only for the animal but also for the producer, as they must then supplement the diet with phytase, adding another cost. Environmentally, phytate causes the animals' manure to be P-rich and therefore, when the manure comes into contact with waterways, eutrophication and other detriments occur. Soybeans with naturally occurring traits for low phytate do exist. However, the trait in some situations is linked to undesirable agronomic characteristics such as low germination. Response: We are leaders in the field of studying germination and emergence of low phytate soybeans and we are poised to answer several relevant questions in the upcoming year with unique genetic resources we have developed.

Publications

  • Cook D., K. Rainey. 2009 "Seed Coat Deficiency, Trait Stability, and Other Soybean Seed Quality Traits for Natto Cultivar Development", Crop Science. Optional Comments: This publication is accepted.


Progress 10/01/07 to 09/30/08

Outputs
OUTPUTS: Activities Reports The soybean breeding program annually provides extensive data to the following cooperative yield tests in soybean. These tests are critical to development of high yielding soybean varieties for the U.S. This type of cooperative regional testing represents a significant amount of work and field space. The tests themselves are a crucial tool for soybean breeding because promising lines must be evaluated on the regional scale before release. * United Soybean Board Regional Quality Traits Test: This report compiles data from two locations in Virginia on agronomic and seed quality aspects of soybeans from certain maturity groups in the United Soybean Board Regional Quality Traits Cooperative test. This test comprises lines with special traits for seed composition, such as higher protein, or low linolenic fatty acid. Participation allows me access to germplasm with value-added traits from other programs for crossing. * United Soybean Board Diversity Tests: This test comprises lines with new genetic diversity, and is a major source of germplasm for my breeding programs and others', to promote healthy genetic diversity in soybean in North America, to increase yields and disease resistance. * USDA Southern Uniform Soybean Tests: This test provides yield data from the most elite. My program also annually conducts the USDA Southern Southern Uniform Soybean Tests Soybean Mosaic Virus (SMV) Nursery. We are the sole program in the U.S. publicly testing soybean varieties for resistance to this economically important disease. This report lists the resistance reaction to SMV of all entries in this regional cooperative test, and is included in the USDA-ARS publication compiling all information from the test Seminars Development of Low Lin and other Value-Added Soy Varieties for Virginia. Information on research and activities related to development of value-added soybean for a session devoted to VDACS Specialty Agriculture Research Grants Program. Given at: November 2007. Virginia Farm Bureau Annual Convention. Chantilly, VA. February 2007 Virginia Crop Improvement Association Annual Seed Conference, Williamsburg, VA. Workshops December 2007. Value Added Crops for Virginia. I helped determine the agenda and presented a session on specialty soybean. Field Days and presentations: Participated in 2007 Virginia Soybean Field Day, August 2007. Presentations by Project Leader and Staff were: * Herbicide Tolerance, Low Linolenic Soybeans, and Other Soybeans in the Pipeline. * Information on research in the program on genetic improvement of small seeded soybean for natto. * A description of research in the program on genotype and environmental interactions on symptoms of Folicur Phytotoxicity. Germplasm Releases: * Released "Glenn", a soybean variety that is currently being produced by Virginia seedsmen and was the highest yielding line in the Virginia State Variety Trials double crop test. * Released "MFS-541", a soybean variety for the specialty markets. PARTICIPANTS: Individuals Katy Martin Rainey, P.D,; Tom Pridgen, Research Specialist; Laura Maupin, Graduate Student; David Cook, Graduate Student; Jody Fanelli, Research Assistant, Luciana Rosso; Research Assistant; Sarah Burleson, undergraduate student; Ted Lewis, Wage Employee , Lin Barrack, Farm Supervisor, Mary Beahm, Wage Employee Partner Organizations Virginia Crop Improvement Association, Montague Farms; Virginia Soybean Board, United Soybean Board, Monsanto Co.; Schillinger Seed, Univ. Tennessee, Univ. Arkansas, NC State University Collaborators and Contacts M.A. Saghai-Maroof, Carl Griffey, Sue Tolin, David Holshouser, Montague Farms, EVAREC, NAPREC, TAREC Training or professional development I have trained two graduate students, a minority undergraduate intern, and directed two undergraduate research projects, and mentored other undergraduates TARGET AUDIENCES: Target audiences State and Regional Farmers, Soybean Breeders in the Public and Private sectors, Users of soybeans in the region and the nation, Students of Plant Breeding, Crop Science, and genetics. Efforts formal classroom instruction: Spring 2008 3h undergraduate 4000-level class: CSES 4144 Plant Breeding and Genetics laboratory instruction: I generally train undergraduate and graduate students in application of molecular techniques to plant breeding development of curriculum: I develop plant genetics and breeding curriculum for undergraduate and graduate students. I have revised required course for undergraduates in Crop Biotechnology, created a graduate Crop Genetics Journal Club that meets approximately 25 weeks a year, I created the entire content of Plant Breeding and Genetics de novo, and I hav emade recommendations and worked with committees on Plant Sciences curriculum in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. internships: I currently have two undergraduates working with me and registered for undergraduate research credit. In 2007 I had a summer intern. PROJECT MODIFICATIONS: Nothing significant to report during this reporting period.

Impacts
Development of disease-resistant soybean cultivars. Relevance: Worldwide loss due to pathogens on all major crops is estimated to be in tens of billions of dollars annually. In soybeans, annual loss due to stem and root rot disease (caused by Phytophthora sojae) alone is estimated to be $1-2 billion dollars. Response: Development of resistant crop plants is the most practical and environment-friendly solution for addressing disease problems. However, detailed information on inheritance, number and chromosomal locations of disease resistance genes is a prerequisite for efficient resistance breeding programs. Although conventional approaches have been successful in this arena, there are some limitations, especially in breeding for complex diseases that are controlled by several genes. The advent of molecular marker technology and the availability of dense linkage maps have provided opportunities for tagging genes or QTLs (Quantitative Trait Loci) controlling resistance to complex diseases. Using such technologies we are developing molecular "tags" for disease resistance genes for subsequent use in marker-assisted selection (MAS) programs to facilitate their incorporation into elite backgrounds and to accelerate development of high-yielding and disease-resistant soybean cultivars. Results: We have conducted extensive research studying soybean resistance to virus diseases. We have identified several genes controlling resistance to soybean mosaic virus and developed DNA markers to facilitate their incorporation into high-yielding soybean lines. Our plans to develop more breeder-friendly and high-throughput markers for these virus resistance genes should further enhance their usefulness to the soybean breeding community by facilitating their incorporation with genes controlling resistance to other soybean diseases. Improving nutritional quality and palatability of soybean for feed and food market. Relevance: Soybeans provide protein and oil to the food and animal feed industries and have been reported to have numerous health benefits. On the other hand,soybeans contain compounds such as undesirable sugars, which have anti-nutritional activities. In the case of feed, the presence of these undesirable sugars in manure cause phosphorous water pollution. Response: The Crop & Soil Environmental Sciences Department's Soybean Genomics and Soybean Breeding programs are working to develop new soybean varieties containing higher levels of desirable sugars, more metabolizable energy and improved flavor and digestibility. This is being done through integrating DNA marker technology with conventional breeding, and feeding studies. Results: The availability of such value-added soybeans for domestic and export markets will enhance agricultural productivity and promote economic development. Farmers will receive higher prices for the improved soybeans, and domestic animal pollution will be reduced.

Publications

  • Comparison of Antioxidant Properties and Bioactive Components of Virginia Soybeans. 2008 Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry 56(23):11515-11519.
  • Rainey, K.M. and D. Cook. 2008. Genetic and Environmental Parameters Affecting Natto Soybeans. ASA-CSSA-SSSA Annual Meeting, Houston, TX.
  • Chung H., S. Hogan, K.M. Rainey, K. Zhou. 2008. Characterization and comparison of antioxidant properties and bioactive components of Virginia soybeans. Institute of Food Technologists Annual Meeting, New Orleans, LA.
  • Rainey, K.M. and G. Buss. 2005. Breeding food-grade soybeans at Virginia Tech. The ASA-CSSA-SSSA International Annual Meeting, November 6-10, 2005, Salt Lake City, UT.