Pre-breeding for Effective Use of Plant Genetic Resources: E-learning course

This e-learning course was produced by the Global Partnership Initiative for Plant Breeding Capacity Building (GIPB) as part of a comprehensive strategy to develop a critical mass of personnel skilled in the genetic improvement of crops. This course aims at strengthening capacities at the interface between germplasm conservation and its use in plant breeding. The course was jointly sponsored by Bioversity International, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and the Global Crop Diversity Trust using the GIPB platform.

Pre-breeding refers to all activities designed to identify desirable characteristics and/or genes from unadapted materials that cannot be used directly in breeding populations and to transfer these traits to an intermediate set of materials that breeders can use further in producing new varieties for farmers. It is a necessary first step in the use of diversity arising from wild relatives and other unimproved materials.

Created using the latest digital technology, the interactive, self-paced learning tool covers a range of theoretical and practical topics from the basic concepts and applications of prebreeding to germplasm management to germplasm distribution and regulatory issues.

Every lesson achieves a specific set of learning objectives, using interactive step-by-step instructions and exercises which help reinforce the internalization of the subject matter. The course is complemented by bibliographic references including on-line resources and a glossary of terms. Structured stand-alone Units allow the learner to take the course as a whole or select specific lessons depending on individual needs and circumstances.

The target audience for this e-learning course is primarily germplasm curators and plant breeders and their support and collaborating personnel. University lecturers and students, extension agents, seeds specialists, field technicians and research managers engaged in germplasm management and/or crop improvement will also find this course very useful.

Please access the course here.

The Genebanks

The 11 CGIAR genebanks currently conserve 730,000 of cereals and grain legumes, forage crops, tree species, root and tuber crops, bananas and crop wild relatives.