PLB 154: INTRODUCTION TO PLANT BREEDING

WINTER QUARTER 2006


The principles of plant breeding applied to crop improvement, and the genetics underlying the theory and practice of breeding.

 

Prerequisite: Knowledge of introductory genetics (BIS 101, PLB 152 or equivalent) is assumed for this course. In the textbook (see below), chapters 3, 4, 6 are useful background reading as a refresher.


CREDITS: 4 units

LECTURES: Tuesday 12:10 - 2:00 pm, Thursday 12:10-1:00 pm, 242 Asmundson

DISCUSSION: Thursday 1:10 - 3:00 pm, 242 Asmundson



INSTRUCTOR          Office                         Contact Info.                           Office Hours 

Prof. Paul Gepts         1242 Plant & Env Sci 752-7743                      Wed 12:00-1:00 PM

Email: plgepts@ucdavis.edu               


TEACHING

ASSISTANT              Office (lab)                 Contact Info.                           Office Hours 

Xuyang Zhang              213 Veihmeyer Hall     754-9292           Tues 2:10-3:00 PM

Email: xuyzhang@ucdavis.edu

 

COURSE WEB PAGE: http://www.agronomy.ucdavis.edu/gepts/PLB154-W06/PLB154-W06.htm


REQUIRED TEXTBOOK:    "Principles of Cultivar Development", vol. 1, By W.R. Fehr (at the bookstore)


COURSE FORMAT:

Weekly lectures plus a discussion section each week. The discussion will include presentations by breeders or geneticists who are practitioners of the field. The group of speakers will include university and private breeders, dealing with different types of crops: outcrossing vs. selfing, agronomic vs. vegetable, herbaceous vs. lignaceous. Discussion and questions are encouraged!


GRADING:

Grading will be based on two exams (midterm and final) and a written report on the discussion sessions. The criteria will be weighed as follows:


                                                                        % of course grade       Exam/assignment due date:

            Midterm exam                                                35 %               5th week of quarter

            Final exam                                                      35 %               Finals week

            Term paper                                                     30 %               Last lecture


OVERVIEW OF LECTURE TOPICS:

            Crop evolution, gene pools, and domestication of crops

            Intellectual property rights and ethics of plant breeding

            Reproductive systems of plants

            Experimental designs and field plot techniques

              Genetic and environmental variances, heritability and effect of selection

            Theory of selection, changes in gene frequency

            Breeding and selection strategies: Self-pollinated crops

            Breeding and selection strategies: Cross-pollinated crops

Marker-assisted selection & linkage disequilibrium mapping

Varietal trials