She noted that the first line of defense against losing an endangered plant is to get genetically representative samples from the wild. This method with slight changes has been successfully applied to winter buds of deciduous woody trees such as the apple, pear, blueberry, raspberry, and persimmon. function(){ Seeds are often the best way to store this material. jQuery('#shs_slider_ul').css({'left':'-300px'}); 0000001203 00000 n But work on the PGR will continue. function shs_animate(){ jQuery('#shs_slider_cont').hover(function(){ clearInterval(shs); },function(){ shs=setInterval(function(){ shs_animate(); },7000); }); Public institutions in the region are struggling on this front and efforts are urgently required as better use of genetic resources and biodiversity in food crops is essential for future food security. jQuery('#shs_slider_ul:not(:animated)').animate({'left' : '-300px'},1000,function(){}); 0000014263 00000 n In their fields and in the nearby wild areas, there is a huge diversity of plants, which continue to evolve and adapt to changing conditions and so can be used to provide useful genes for new crops.

function shs_animate_next(){ New varieties of plants can be grown by cross-breeding different genetic variants and produce plants with desirable traits like disease resistance, increased tolerance to stress. A selected number of research officers from partner and associate organisations from three countries have been put through these trainings and they are expected to play an important role in PGR conservation and utilisation. Weve talked about genetic diversitybut why is it important, and how does it fit in with our general topic of plant sexual reproduction? We need to take this seriously, especially with respect to the food crop diversity, as the crops in question are directly responsible for the livelihoods of our people. The continued lack of investment in agriculture, particularly in agricultural research over the years, has inevitably led to a shortage of qualified agricultural scientists including plant breeders in the region. FAO estimates that during the last century, 75% of crop genetic diversity has been lost. 0000010240 00000 n Genetic diversity is a very important issue in agriculture. 0000026613 00000 n It is generally recognized that plant genetic diversity changes in time and space. By JAMES LARAKI THE loss of plant genetic diversity is considered one of today’s most serious environmental concerns by the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO). }). 0000002700 00000 n Any human activity that affects the delicate relationships between species and habitats will impoverish our quality of life and reduce the number of resources available to us. Guidance is particularly needed on how many living plants are necessary to conserve a threshold level of genetic diversity in ex situ collections. Certainly the value of genetic diversity is immense, and host plant resistance is just one example. jQuery('#shs_next').click(function(){ var item_width = jQuery('#shs_slider_ul .shs_items').outerWidth(); The report notes that genetic information held in certain crop varieties is crucial to the development of heat, drought, salinity, pest and diseases-resistant, fast-growing, high-yielding new varieties that are necessary to reduce food insecurity in the face of climate change. 0000007917 00000 n The report “State of the world’s plant genetic resources for food and agriculture”, which covers topics ranging from gene bank collections to the effects of climate change on crop diversity, is intended to highlight what is being done and needs to be done to protect biodiversity in food crops. jQuery('#shs_slider_ul').css({'left':'0'}); jQuery('#shs_slider_ul').css({'left':'-300px','width':item_width*total_width+10}); }else{ In addition to storing genetic material from present crops, it is vital to conserve the bro-ad genetic diversity of crop wild relatives, which are important for breeding plants with new characteristics, such as … Just nine crops (wheat, rice, maize, barley, sorghum/millet, potato, sweet potato/yam, sugar cane and soybean) account for over 75 percent of the plant kingdom's contribution to human dietary energy. 0000009123 00000 n 0000018788 00000 n When closely related organisms (siblings or cousins, for example) interbreed, any genetic weaknesses that are hidden in the parents can be multiplied in the offspring. 0000010261 00000 n if(rcount < 3){ NARI is conducting this training series with the aim to improve the human resource capacity in PGR conservation and utilisation in research and development institutions in the region. 0000008605 00000 n Existing methods to conserve genetic diversity depend mostly on the choice of the breeding individuals. One in five plant species are at risk of extinction worldwide. In order to conserve biodiversity in plants, it is important to targets three independent levels that include ecosystems, species and genes. … 0000032709 00000 n The areas covered in these series are focused on PGR collection and maintenance, characterisation and evaluation, conservation, screening and evaluation, pre-breeding techniques and breeding and utilisations. It notes that there are thousands of wild relatives of crops that still need to be collected, studied and documented because they hold genetic secrets that enable them to withstand factors such as heat, droughts, salinity, and pests and diseases. jQuery('#shs_slider_ul .shs_items:last').after(jQuery('#shs_slider_ul .shs_items:first')); Genetic diversity is important to a species’ fitness, long-term viability, and ability to adapt to changing environmental conditions. PGR, which is an important area in science, has been left unattended for a while and building human resource capacity is essential. The corpse flower could help bring much-needed attention to the importance of genetic diversity in plants, which is a worldwide problem because … T he plant genetic diversity used in agriculture—the crops that feed us and their wild relatives—is being lost at an alarming rate. Ocean viruses, which infect the plankton, carry genes of other organisms in addition to their own. © 2009 - 2016. FAO estimates that during the last century, 75% of crop genetic diversity has been lost. Genetic diversity reduces the recurrence of undesirable inherited traits.

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If a population has < l N m it is more susceptible to genetic drift [ 42 ]. A mindset for gathering, maintaining, and using the maximum diversity possible drives the following recommendations (see Overview). var shs=setInterval(function(){ shs_animate(); },7000); The participants are also expected to become trainers of others in their respective organisations and countries. The western Pacific region, including PNG, is rich in plant genetic diversity and home to many food crops. var left_indent = parseInt(jQuery('#shs_slider_ul').css('left')) -item_width; Smallholder farmers can use diversity of crops as a resource to adapt their crops to environmental changes. Genetic diversity of M. subcordatum is compared with 12 other Memecylon species and threatened plants . shs_animate_next(); Conserving plant genetic diversity crucial for future food security – UN 26 October 2010 The world’s food security could be threatened by the failure to conserve the wild plant species that are genetically related to the crops grown by mankind for food, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization ( FAO ) said in a new report released today. 0000001475 00000 n However, maintaining genetic diversity is fundamental to food security and the provision of raw materials and it is best preserved within plants' natural habitats. 0000001454 00000 n One solution for protecting PSESPs is the creation of small-scale reserves or Plant Micro-Reserves (PMR; Laguna, 2001, Laguna et al., 2004). var item_width = jQuery('#shs_slider_ul .shs_items').outerWidth(); 0000001682 00000 n 0000009198 00000 n

jQuery('#shs_slider_ul .shs_items:first').before(jQuery('#shs_slider_ul .shs_items:last')); }); More worrying is that among the many threatened species are wild relatives of our crops; species that could contribute invaluable traits to future crop varieties. FAO, established by the United Nations, is concerned that if the current trend persist, as many as half of all plant species could face extinction. In a report released recently, FAO warns that the loss of biodiversity will have a major impact on the ability of humankind to feed itself in the future, a situation it says is far more serious for inhabitants of developing countries. trailer << /Size 100 /Info 60 0 R /Root 62 0 R /Prev 185313 /ID[] >> startxref 0 %%EOF 62 0 obj << /Type /Catalog /Pages 58 0 R /PageLabels 56 0 R >> endobj 98 0 obj << /S 123 /L 209 /Filter /FlateDecode /Length 99 0 R >> stream The National is the top-selling newspaper in Papua New Guinea. 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