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  • Avinash Chandra Rai 
  • Krishna Kumar Rai 

The continuous expansion in human population together with increased distortion in agroclimatic conditions has diverted the attention of plant scientific communities along with agri-food sectors to ensure continuous production of good quality and quantity of foods and fuels using minimal resources. Confrontation of these future demands will require dissemination of upper hand techniques to accelerate slow improvement rate of development of substantial plant varieties through accelerating breeding programmes by reducing their generation time under controlled condition. The upper hand technique, viz. “Speed breeding”, is a method, which shortens the generation time of crop plants to expedite rapid generation advancements, i.e. up to four to five generations of crops in 1 year, which can help in the generation of valuable plant varieties and thus ensuring global food security. Speed breeding protocols have been developed for various crops such as wheat, chickpea, barley and pea which are conducted under environment-controlled growth chambers. In these crops, speed breeding has accelerated the development of improved varieties by conducting various studies such as genotyping by sequencing, mutant studies, transformation and phenotyping for trait of interest. However, limited information is available on the exploitation of this fast-track technique in the breeding programme to foster improved plant varieties in economically important crops. Here, in this chapter we have uncovered the hidden potential of speed breeding technique and its integration with other modern genomic tools such as CRISPR-Cas9, ZFN, TALENS coupled with epigenomics and next-generation sequencing for crop improvement and nutritional security.

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Speed Breeding for Rapid Cycling of Crops for Stress Management and Global Food Security
  • Avinash Chandra Rai 
  • Krishna Kumar Rai 
Speed Breeding for Rapid Cycling of Crops for Stress Management and Global Food Security

The continuous expansion in human population together with increased distortion in agroclimatic conditions has diverted the attention of plant scientific communities along with agri-food sectors to ensure continuous production of good quality and quantity of foods and fuels using minimal resources. Confrontation of these future demands will require dissemination of upper hand techniques to accelerate slow improvement rate of development of substantial plant varieties through accelerating breeding programmes by reducing their generation time under controlled condition. The upper hand technique, viz. “Speed breeding”, is a method, which shortens the generation time of crop plants to expedite rapid generation advancements, i.e. up to four to five generations of crops in 1 year, which can help in the generation of valuable plant varieties and thus ensuring global food security. Speed breeding protocols have been developed for various crops such as wheat, chickpea, barley and pea which are conducted under environment-controlled growth chambers. In these crops, speed breeding has accelerated the development of improved varieties by conducting various studies such as genotyping by sequencing, mutant studies, transformation and phenotyping for trait of interest. However, limited information is available on the exploitation of this fast-track technique in the breeding programme to foster improved plant varieties in economically important crops. Here, in this chapter we have uncovered the hidden potential of speed breeding technique and its integration with other modern genomic tools such as CRISPR-Cas9, ZFN, TALENS coupled with epigenomics and next-generation sequencing for crop improvement and nutritional security.

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