Type: Chapter

Ensuring the genetic diversity of maize and its wild relatives


J. Stephen Smith

Iowa State University

Candice Gardner


Denise E. Costich


Publication date:

09 June 2017

ID: 9781838791025

E-Chapter format

£25.00 excluding tax
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Genebanks and ex situ collections are essential to conserving maize genetic diversity and enabling global access to those resources. The chapter provides a comprehensive and authoritative review of the key issues facing both in situ and ex situ collections. These issues include better conservation and exploitation of wild varieties and landraces, as well as identifying broader genetic and allelic diversity in Zea and Tripsacum. The chapter includes case studies of the use of exotic germplasm to support breeding of more resilient varieties.

Table of contents

1 Introduction
2 Global maize cultivation and yield trends
3 Domestication and global spread of maize
4 Genetic diversity in Zea: maize and its wild relatives
5 The importance of genetic diversity in improving maize productivity
6 Case studies of the use of maize genetic diversity in breeding
7 In situ diversity and conservation of maize genetic diversity
8 Ex situ conservation of maize diversity in genebanks
9 Critical issues facing maize genebank curators today and in the immediate future
10 Conclusions
11 References