TECHNOLOGY TRANSFER TO APPLIED BREEDING PROGRAMS
The anticipated Molecular Breeding (MB) applications deriving from the proposed research include marker-aided selection (MAS) and marker-aided early selection (MAES). Their purpose is to accelerate and improve the accuracy of tree breeding. Acceleration of tree breeding would be handsome, because it take approximately 20 years to complete one cycle of improvement. Succintly, a tree breeding cycle include : 1) parents selection, 2) controlled crossing, 3) comparative plantations and 4) data collection for the next selection.
The MRNF (ministère des Ressources naturelles et de la Faune) of Québec has recently begun to deploy the infrastructure and develop in-house capabilities to implement MB. Thus, as a first step in our technology transfer activities, we will implement a plan with the MRNF to demonstrate the immediate applicability of MB at a large scale (proof-of-concept) and lay the strategy for technology transfer towards other governmental and industrial partners. The main goals of the plan are 1) to explore the integration of MB in actual white spruce breeding programs (MRNF) and 2) to develop large-scale genotyping assays to select the best way to implement MB. One of the first MAS for trees would be realized. This will allow to recommend the parents that will compose the third generation seed orchard of white spruce of MRNF. This MAS of parents will permit to save approximatly 9 years as compare to the traditional tree improvement process.