Team cracks genetic code to develop climate-resilient chickpea

Question: Which institute led the global team in the research cracking genetic code to develop climate resilient chickpea?
(c) NASA
(d) CSIR
Answer: (b)
Related facts:

  • A global team of scientists led by International Crop Research Institute for semi arid tropics (ICRISAT) have successfully completed a breakthrough sequencing of 429 chickpea lines from 45 countries to identify genes that are tolerant to drought and heat.

Key facts of the report:

  • The report mentions that India which is the biggest consumer of pulses in the world is facing increasing production gap.
  • This research will help India in going closer towards attaining self-sufficiency in pulse production.
  • It was found in the study that chickpea came to India from Fertile Crescent of Mediterranean via .
  • It may have been introduced back to the primary centers of origin after 200 years.
  • This is the largest-ever exercise of whole-genome re-sequencing of chickpea.
  • This will help in the potential development of newer varieties of chickpea with higher yields, which are disease-and-pest-resistant, and better able to withstand the vagaries of weather.
  • The International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) said it led a team in close collaboration with the BGI-Shenzhen, China, involving 39 scientists from 21 leading research institutes of all around the world.
  • More than 90 per cent of chickpea cultivation area is in South Asia. Drought and increasing temperatures are said to cause more than 70 per cent yield loss in chickpea globally.
  • Chickpea being a cool season crop is likely to suffer further reduction in productivity due to rising temperatures.
  • The study established a foundation for large-scale characterisation of germplasm, population genetics and crop breeding. It also helped understand domestication and post-domestication divergence of chickpea.
  • The study mapped the origins of chickpea and its ascent in Asia and Africa. It also speculates about the possible introduction of chickpea to the New World directly from Central Asia or East Africa rather than the Mediterranean.
  • ICRISAT is an international organisation headquartered in Hyderabad, Telangana. It conducts research on agriculture and seeds.


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