Student: Alisa Kravtsova
The future supply of biomass for the Swedish forest industry will come mostly from plantations, and seed orchards supply almost all the regeneration material used in plantation. Because of this fundamental role, all orchards should function well, producing high seed yield and breeding gain while also securing broad genetic base to support a greater forest production and resilience in future conditions. Among other issues, background pollination (also called pollen contamination) in seed orchards is a major concern for the deployment of orchard crops because contaminating pollen decrease breeding gain. How severe is the issue is not yet clear because the a few available studies on seed orchard mating systems revealed controversial results. On a different note, mating between differently adapted populations could result in increased phenotypic and genetic variance that might facilitate novel adaptation under increased climatic fluctuations. Consequently, the seed orchard practices in Sweden (e.g. transfer seed orchard southward for better seed crop yield) may positively affect species´ long-term adaptation and productivity in their northern range. This potential positive effect, however, has never been examined.
Our research activities on seed orchards aim at obtaining an overview on how orchard design, location and management practices could have affected the genetic function of each orchard and, thus, the crops´ potential for production gain and climate adaptation. We are particularly interested in assessing the following issues:
Supervisor: Xiao-Ru Wang (UMU)
Co-supervisor David Hall (UMU)
Industry partner: Skogforsk (Ulfstand Wennström)
Hur värderar vi bäst olika egenskaper ekonomiskt när de vägs samman vid förädling?
Student: Irena Fundova
A selection index approach of multiple traits is used for current breeding selection for Scots pine. To be able to compare different traits they have to be transformed to a common monitory unite like SEK by using economic weights. However, economic weights for improving the multiple traits at rotation age have not been properly defined using the existing production systems (solid wood, pulp and paper, and energy production systems) of the two species. For Lodgepole pine, improvement of wood stiffness and other wood quality traits along with growth and vitality is also important. Through the development of breeding objective for these products, bio-economic model or profit function will be developed to estimate economic weights for different production systems and genetic variance and covariance from early selection to harvest traits including wood quality traits are estimated. There are now suitable progeny trials available for Scots pine with tree sizes suitable for construction wood studies. These can be used for a great number of investigations of which some has started.
Main supervisor: Harry Wu
Co-supervisor: Gunnar Jansson
Industry superviros: Bengt Andersson Gull (Skogforsk)
Hur kan vi utveckla nya förädlingsverktyg för att integrera alla de datamängder som kommer från de nya gran och tall-genomprojekten med existerande förädlingsprogram.
Candidate gene and genome-wide association of DNA markers with phenotypic traits has made the dissection of phenotypic variation into genotypic variation possible in trees. Current development of SNP chip in whole genome sequencing and re-sequencing projects is a first step towards developing efficient DNA marker system in pine and spruce for large scale association analyses. It is envisioned that genome-wide association could cover a large portion of genetic variation for quantitative traits. Genomic selection method has advanced greatly in animal breeding program recently. With the completion of whole genome sequencing and re-sequencing of spruce and pines, genomic selection could be a reality in tree with increased efficiency of early selection. However, specific method dealing with low linkage disequilibrium and large effective population number in the tree breeding population need to be developed for effective genome-wide selection including efficient design of experiment for tree species to accurately estimate allelic effects. We will examine how the size and structure of population, experiment design, mating structure and density of markers in tree species affected the accuracy of candidate and genome-wide association studies. Adequate tools will be developed for integration of genomics with practical breeding program. This could involve development of integration strategy, estimation of genomic breeding values, and use of genomic information in designing breeding strategy.
Host Company: Skogforsk
PhD student: Ainhoa Calleja-Rodriguez
Supervisors: Harry Wu (Main supervisor),
Pär Ingvarsson, Rosario Garcia Gil, Fikret Isik, Sara Abrahamsson (Industry supervisor)