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Modern Strategies in Plant Breeding


Modern Strategies in Plant Breeding

Maria Carlota Vaz Patto
Manuel Pedro Fevereiro


  1. Understanding the importance (current challenges) and multidisciplinary (most relevant areas of knowledge) of plant breeding.
  2. Basic concepts in plant breeding and evolution factors.
  3. Knowledge of modern methods of plant breeding and the various tools currently available.
  4. Basic knowledge necessary to investigate and solve current problems whose solution depends on plant breeding.
  5. It is intended that the student understands the potential of plant breeding to address global pressures (current and expected at short-medium term), and is able to identify the most appropriate tools to address the improvement goals.


  1. The concept of plant breeding, the growing need for improved plants and the interdisciplinary bases of breeding.
  2. Plant breeding along time – the most important milestones.
  3. Development of variability and breeding materials.
  4. Objectives of improvement (for short, medium and long term).
  5. Conventional breeding methods (autogamous species vs. allogamous, selection indexes, hybrid seeds and mutagenesis)
  6. Modern breeding techniques (general aspects of molecular tools, somaclonal variation, haplodization, somatic hybridization, genetic engineering)
  7. Molecular markers in genetic studies (diversity, genetic maps and linkage analyses, mapping QTLs, location of genes and genomics-genetics)
  8. Marker assisted selection (pedigree analysis, selection of major genes, QTLs selection, selection of the complete genome)
  9. Genomic Analysis (synteny and collinearity, mapping by association or linkage disequilibrium)

The evaluation will be based on an oral and written presentation of a topic chosen by the student from among those proposed for research. The performance during the tutorials, in a trend of continuous assessment by the tutor, will also be considered.

Main Bibliography

  1. Bradshaw J.E. (2016) “Plant Breeding: Past, Present and Future”. Springer (693).

  2. Acquaah G. (2012) “Principles of Plant Genetics and Breeding”. Wiley-Blackwell (740 pp.).

  3. Brown J., Caligari P.D.S., Campos H.A. (2014) “Plant Breeding”. Wiley Blakwell Publishing (278 pp.).

  4. Henry R.J. (2012) “Molecular Markers in Plants”. Wiley-Blackwell (210 pp.)

  5. Xu Y. (2010) Molecular Plant Breeding”. Cabi International (734 pp.).



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