See more from this Session: General Genomics, Molecular Genetics, & Biotechnology: II
Due to its excellent tolerance to drought/high temperature stresses and low soil fertility, sorghum (Sorghum bicolor L. Moench) has emerged as a promising bioenergy crop due to its excellent tolerance to drought/heat stresses. Completion of the sorghum genome sequence has opened new avenues for sorghum functional genomics. However, the availability of genetic resources, specifically mutant lines, is limited. Chemical mutagenesis of sorghum germplasm, followed by screening for mutants altered in important agronomic traits, represents a rapid and effective means of addressing this limitation. We have created a sorghum mutant library consisting of >5000 pedigreed M4 lines through single seed descent from M1 in the elite inbred line BTx623 that was used for sequencing the genome. The mutant library displays a wide range of mutant phenotype in morphological, physiological, and agronomic traits (http://www.lbk.ars.usda.gov/psgd/index-sorghum.aspx). Many mutants, such as brown midrib and erect leaf, have potential applications in improving the biomass yield and quality of sorghum. Recently, we have established a high throughput reverse genetic platform to identify mutant series for genes with known sequence through TILLING (targeting induced local lesions in genome). Our TILLING platform uses none-labeled primers that can be optimized in users' lab. Several genes have been TILLED using this platform. We intend to make the TILLING platform accessible to public for collaborative research.