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Project Aims to Boost Chickpea Nutrition and Environmental Sustainability
Tuesday, 2014/03/04 | 08:25:26

A new research effort called Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Climate Resilient Chickpea under the leadership of University of California Davis (UC Davis) aims to improve the productivity of chickpea varieties by harnessing the genetic diversity of wild species. Launched in Ethiopia on February 24, 2014, the five-year, $4 million research program is especially important in the developing world, where the chickpea provides a crucial source of income, food security and nutrition to poor farmers, particularly women. Chickpea is the third most widely grown legume crop in the world, and it captures and uses atmospheric nitrogen, thus contributing to soil fertility.


Doug Cook, UC Davis plant pathology professor and director of the project said "This project aims to develop  chickpea for increased resilience to climate stress and other high-value traits by expanding the range of genetic adaptations available to breeders." Through this project, researchers will combine advanced genomic technologies with analysis of plant traits to identify new and desirable genes from chickpea's closest wild relatives.


To learn more about this initative, read the UC Davis news release at http://news.ucdavis.edu/search/news_detail.lasso?id=10836.

UC Davis researcher Doug Cook and Asnake Fikre of the Ethiopian Institute for Agricultural Research examine a chickpea field in Ethiopia. (UC Davis photo/courtesy of Doug Cook)


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