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- January 1, 2007 - December 31, 2007
has contribution area
has academic priority
has USDA Area
impact statement impact
- The ability to genetically modify apple tree form has the potential to reduce labor needs and expenses in apple production by reducing the labor needed for pruning and training. The design of superior tree types allows mechanical harvesting to be considered. The use of unique genetic material also will have an impact if superior types of apple trees are identified for home gardeners.
impact statement issue
- The modification of apple tree form is needed to maximize both productivity and fruit quality. Currently pruning and training are used to modify apple plant form and represent major expenses in commercial apple production. The ability to understand the genes involved in reduction of tree size and the amount and type of branching will provide breeders with tools to genetically modify plant form. The identification of molecular markers would aid efficient selection for good tree architecture. This project also promises to identify unique tree types for the home gardener.
impact statement response
- We have identified a unique genetic resource to address an important issue in apple production. Crosses were made with this material and seedling progenies are being studied by a graduate student. The goal is to understand genes influencing components of apple tree form and to develop markers for genetic improvement of these traits.
impact statement summary
- A unique apple tree discovered in the Cornell apple breeding program was used in crosses to study genes influencing tree vigor and architecture. The use of plants with a distinctive appearance has been a traditional way to study genes with a major effect on tree size and branching. However, in apple, most dwarf or reduced stature plants fail to flower or set fruit, eliminating their use in genetic studies. The discovery of a unique tree type with the ability to set fruits provides us with material for use in genetic studies of plant architecture.
- Applied Research
- Brown, Susan K Cornell Faculty Member
USDA area other
- genetic study