Leveraging Stable Isotope Traits to Improve Soybean Water Use Efficiency and Yield Under Drought
Sustainable Production
Lead Principal Investigator:
Felix Fritschi, University of Missouri
Co-Principal Investigators:
Andrew Scaboo, University of Missouri
Project Code:
Contributing Organization (Checkoff):
Institution Funded:
Brief Project Summary:
Soybeans that have high water use efficiency can withstand drought conditions better. The project researchers are looking for traits that confer good water use efficiency within the USDA soybean germplasm collection. After finding promising traits through genetic selection and testing, they will map the quantitative trait loci to mark the area where the trait would appear, hastening the breeding process. The identified germplasm will be crossed with soybean cultivars that have desirable agronomic traits to arrive with a high-yielding soybean with good water use efficiency.
Key Beneficiaries:
#breeders, #farmers, #geneticists
Unique Keywords:
#breeding & genetics, #germplasm, #seed composition, #soybean varieties, #water use efficiency
Information And Results
Project Summary

Gene identification, mapping population development, and breeding for greater drought tolerance based on carbon and oxygen stable isotope discrimination

Project Objectives

1) conduct multi-environment tests to determine yield, yield stability and potential tradeoffs associated with WUE traits in elite germplasm,

2) identify putative genes associated with CID and OID,

3) continue advancing the mapping populations, including the Multi-parent Advanced Generation Inter-Cross (MAGIC) population and inbred line populations, and

4) continue selection and breeding with genotypes with proven isotope signatures and elite varieties background.

Project Deliverables

• New germplasm with good agronomic characteristics, high yield, and high water use efficiency and predicted greater drought tolerance

• Establishment of the extent of yield stability / plasticity when lines with different water use efficiency are grown in
environments that differ in water availability

• Diverse genotypes with distinct allele combinations that underpin contrasting water use efficiency and can be used to enhance breeding for drought tolerance

• Candidate genes associated with carbon isotope discrimination and thus water use efficiency

• Unique genetic populations that can be used to identify molecular markers to accelerate drought tolerance breeding

• Postdoctoral researcher with enhanced skills in soybean breeding, genomics, and physiology

Progress Of Work

Final Project Results

Benefit To Soybean Farmers

Due to the frequency and extent of droughts in Missouri, the availability of more drought tolerant varieties would unquestionably result in tremendous benefits for soybean growers for years to come, and the economic benefit would exceed several millions of dollars annually.

The United Soybean Research Retention policy will display final reports with the project once completed but working files will be purged after three years. And financial information after seven years. All pertinent information is in the final report or if you want more information, please contact the project lead at your state soybean organization or principal investigator listed on the project.