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Gene editing strategies for creation of novel genetic diversity for faba bean breeding

Mamunur Rashid

ACGG Cohort 1, JLU

The aim of my PhD research project is to develop a DNA-free genome-edited faba bean (Vicia faba L.) with enhanced nutritional value and improved drought resistance. The project focuses on three main objectives to achieve this goal. The first objective is to optimize the genetic transformation protocol in faba bean. This step is crucial for the efficient and accurate introduction of desired genetic modifications. By fine-tuning the transformation protocol, we plan to enhance the success rate of introducing genetic modifications to the target cultivar. The second objective involves eliminating the presence of anti-nutritional factors, namely vicine and convicine, in Tiffany. These compounds can be detrimental to human health when consumed in significant quantities. Using the CRISPR-Cas genome-editing approach, we intended to precisely edit the genome of Tiffany to eliminate or reduce the expression of vicine and convicine, thereby creating a more nutritionally valuable cultivar. The third objective of this project is to develop drought-tolerant faba bean genotypes. As climate change leads to more frequent and severe droughts, developing crops that can withstand water scarcity is of utmost importance. By combining the elimination of anti-nutritional factors with the introduction of drought tolerance, we plan to create a multifunctional cultivar that addresses both nutritional concerns and resilience to drought stress. By successfully achieving these objectives, this project aims to contribute to the development of sustainable and resilient crop varieties, providing valuable solutions for improving food security and nutrition in the face of changing environmental conditions.

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