Publications by authors named "Kamal Nashef"

4 Publications

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Assessing adaptive requirements and breeding potential of spelt under Mediterranean environment.

Sci Rep 2021 Mar 30;11(1):7208. Epub 2021 Mar 30.

Department of Vegetable and Field Crops, Institute of Plant Sciences, Agricultural Research Organization (ARO)-Volcani Center, 7528809, Rishon LeZion, Israel.

The rising demand for spelt wheat (Triticum aestivum ssp. spelta) as a high-value grain crop has raised interest in its introduction into non-traditional spelt growing areas. This study aimed to assess adaptive constrains of spelt under short Mediterranean season. At first screening of a wide spelt collection for phenology and allelic distribution at the photoperiod (PPD) and vernalization (VRN) loci was done. In addition an in-depth phenotypic evaluation of a selected panel (n = 20) was performed, including agronomically important traits and concentration of grain mineral (GMC) and grain protein (GPC) content. Results from both wide screening and in-depth in panel (group of 18 spelt lines and two bread wheat lines) evaluation shows that the major adaptive constraint for spelt under Mediterranean conditions is late heading, caused by day length sensitivity, as evident from phenology and allelic profile (PPD and VRN). All lines carrying the photoperiod-sensitive allele (PPD-D1b) were late flowering (> 120DH). Based on the panel field evaluations those consequently suffer from low grain yield and poor agronomic performances. As for minerals, GMC for all but Zn, significantly correlated with GPC. In general, GMC negatively correlated with yield which complicated the assessment of GMC per-se and challenge the claim for higher mineral content in spelt grains. The exceptions were, Fe and Zn, which did not correlate with yield. Spelt lines showing high Fe and Zn concentration in a high-yield background illustrate their potential for spelt wheat breeding. Improving spelt adaptation to Mediterranean environments could be mediated by introducing the insensitive-PPD-D1a allele to spelt wheat background. Following this breeding path spelt could better compete with bread wheat under short season with limited and fluctuating rain fall.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-86276-1DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8010017PMC
March 2021

Genetic improvement of wheat early vigor promote weed-competitiveness under Mediterranean climate.

Plant Sci 2021 Feb 4;303:110785. Epub 2020 Dec 4.

The Robert H. Smith Institute of Plant Sciences and Genetics in Agriculture, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Rehovot 7610001, Israel. Electronic address:

Chemical weed-control is the most effective practice for wheat, however, rapid evolution of herbicide-resistant weeds threat food-security and calls for integration of non-chemical practices. We hypothesis that integration of alternative GA-responsive dwarfing genes into elite wheat cultivars can promote early vigor and weed-competitiveness under Mediterranean climate. We develop near-isogenic lines of bread wheat cultivars with GAR dwarfing genes and evaluate them for early vigor and weed-competitiveness under various environmental and management conditions to identify promising NIL for weed-competitiveness and grain yield. While all seven NILs responded to external gibberellic acid application, they exhibited differences in early vigor. Greenhouse and field evaluations highlighted NIL OC1 (Rht8andRht12) as a promising line, with significant advantage in canopy early vigor over its parental. To facilitate accurate and continuous early vigor data collection, we applied non-destructive image-based phenotyping approaches which offers non-expensive and end-user friendly solution for selection. NIL OC1 was tested under different weed density level, infestation waves, and temperatures and highlight the complex genotypic × environmental × management interactions. Our findings demonstrate the potential of genetic modification of dwarfing genes as promising approach to improve weed-competitiveness, and serve as basis for future breeding efforts to support sustainable wheat production under semi-arid Mediterranean climate.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.plantsci.2020.110785DOI Listing
February 2021

The Israeli-Palestinian wheat landraces collection: restoration and characterization of lost genetic diversity.

J Sci Food Agric 2020 Aug 18;100(11):4083-4092. Epub 2019 Jul 18.

Department of Vegetables and Field Crop, Institute of Plant Sciences, Agricultural Research Organization, Volcani Center, Rishon LeZion, Israel.

Background: For over a century, genetic diversity of wheat worldwide was eroded by continual selection for high yields and industrial demands. Wheat landraces cultivated in Israel and Palestine demonstrate high genetic diversity and a potentially wide repertoire of adaptive alleles. While most Israeli-Palestinian wheat landraces were lost in the transition to 'Green Revolution' semi-dwarf varieties, some germplasm collections made at the beginning of the 20th century survived in gene banks and private collections worldwide. However, fragmentation and poor conservation place this unique genetic resource at a high risk of genetic erosion. Herein, we describe a long-term initiative to restore, conserve, and characterize a collection of Israeli and Palestinian wheat landraces (IPLR).

Results: We report on (i) the IPLR construction (n = 932), (ii) the historical and agronomic context to this collection, (iii) the characterization and assessment of the IPLR's genetic diversity, and (iv) a data comparison from two distinct subcollections within IPLR: a collection made by N. Vavilov in 1926 (IPLR-VIR) and a later one (1979-1981) made by Y. Mattatia (IPLR-M). Though conducted in the same eco-geographic space, these two collections were subjected to considerably different conservation pathways. IPLR-M, which underwent only one propagation cycle, demonstrated marked genetic and phenotypic variability (within and between accessions) in comparison with IPLR-VIR, which had been regularly regenerated over ∼90 years.

Conclusion: We postulate that long-term ex situ conservation involving human and genotype × environment selection may significantly reduce accession heterogeneity and allelic diversity. Results are further discussed in a broader context of pre-breeding and conservation. © 2019 Society of Chemical Industry.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jsfa.9822DOI Listing
August 2020

Effect of GA-sensitivity on wheat early vigor and yield components under deep sowing.

Front Plant Sci 2015 10;6:487. Epub 2015 Jul 10.

The Robert H. Smith Institute of Plant Sciences and Genetics in Agriculture, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem Rehovot, Israel.

Establishment of seedlings is a key factor in achievement of uniform field stands and, consequently, stable yields. Under Mediterranean conditions, soil moisture in the upper layer is limited and seedlings may be exposed to frequent dehydration events. The presence of the Reduced height (Rht)-B1b and Rht-D1b semi-dominant dwarfing alleles results in insensitivity to gibberellin (GAI) and, hence, poor emergence from deep sowing. Introduction of alternative dwarfing genes and, thereby, preservation of the gibberellin response (GAR) and coleoptile length, contributes to better emergence from deep sowing. Initially 47 wheat cultivars carrying different Rht alleles were screened for their ability to emerge from deep sowing, and then 17 of them were selected for detailed physiological characterization in the field. The modern wheat lines containing GAI alleles showed significantly lower percentages of emergence from deep sowing than the GAR lines, i.e., 52 and 74%, respectively. Differences in early developmental stages were associated with grain yield, as indicated by a reduction of 37.3% in the modern GAI cultivars. Our results demonstrate the potential of alternative dwarfing genes for improving seedling establishment and grain yields in Mediterranean-like environments.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fpls.2015.00487DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4498040PMC
July 2015