Herbicide tolerant, machine-harvestable chickpea, faba bean and lentil varieties
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This product line aims at developing and making available to farmers machine harvestable and herbicide tolerant chickpea, lentil and faba bean varieties that are expected to reduce cost of cultivation through labor saving, enhance income of farmers, and reduce drudgery on farm women who are largely involved in manual harvesting and weeding of these crops. Accelerated breeding efforts led to release of several machine harvestable varieties, which include 10 kabuli chickpea varieties with resistance to ascochyta blight (3 in Turkey and one each in Lebanon, Tunisia, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Iran, Kazakhstan and Russia), two desi chickpea varieties with resistance to fusarium wilt (India), four lentil varieties with resistance to ascochyta blight (Turkey), and four faba bean varieties (two in Syria and one each in Ethiopia and Mexico). Adoption of these varieties is being enhanced by conducting demonstrations on farmers’ fields, conducting field days and enhancing seed availability. Over 3400 genotypes (germplasm accessions, breeding lines and varieties) were screened for tolerance to herbicides in chickpea (949), lentil (771) and faba bean (1703) and sources of tolerance to several herbicides (Metribuzin, Imazethapyr, Glyphosate, Pendimethalin, and Oxyflurfen) were identified. Efforts are also being made to induce herbicide tolerance through mutagenesis and development of transgenics using P450 gene from soybean (CYP71A10) and a xenobiotic inducible gene of Helianthus tuberosus (CYP76B1). Two EMS-induced mutant lines of faba bean were found tolerant to herbicide glyphosate. Parasitic weeds (Orobanche spp.) are also constraints to lentil and faba bean production in some countries (e.g. Ethiopia, Morocco, Tunisia, Egypt). A large number of genotypes of lentil (516) and faba bean (1924) were screened for Orobanche resistance and genotypes with high level of resistance to Orobanche were identified. Studies are in progress to identify molecular markers for quantitative trait loci (QTLs) controlling herbicide tolerance in chickpea and resistance to Orobanche in faba bean.