Development of new cytoplasmic-genetic male-sterile lines in pigeonpea from crosses between Cajanus cajan (L.) Millsp.and C. scarabaeoides (L.) Thouars

Thiyagarajan Kalaimagal, Arunachalam Muthaiah, Sankaran Rajarathinam, Subramaniam Malini, Nagasamy Nadarajan, Indra Pechiammal
Journal of Applied Genetics 2008, 49 (3): 221-7
Exploitation of hybrid vigour is quite possible in cross-pollinated crops. However, pigeonpea is a grain legume crop with a moderate level of cross-pollination (20-70%), which is mainly aided by insect pollinators. As a first step, hybrids based on genetic male sterility (GMS) were developed in pigeonpea, but the hybrid seed production technique is not farmer-friendly, because in the hybrid seed production plot 50% of the population, which are male-fertile in the female rows, have to be eliminated in time before contamination. This requires skilled labour and is a time-consuming process, which increases the cost of hybrid seed production. Therefore, the objective of this study was to develop cytoplasmic-genetic male-sterile (CGMS) lines in pigeonpea through wide hybridization, which would be very suitable for hybrid seed production. Two CGMS lines, viz. CORG 990052 A and CORG 990047, were developed by interspecific hybridization of Cajanus cajan and C. scarabaeoides. Restorers were identified and three CGMS-based pigeonpea hybrids were developed. The hybrid COPH 3 is found to be promising in Tamil Nadu State, India.

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