The Rice Gene Discovery Unit, a specialized lab jointly established by BIOTEC and Kasetsart University has carried out the Molecular Rice Breeding Program for the Mekong Region since 2004. The Program aims to promote the implementation of Marker Assisted Selection (MAS) into the current rice breeding program in the Mekong region, particularly Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Myanmar through a comprehensive hands-on training program and sharing of genomic information and research facilities. The endeavor was financially supported by Rockefeller Foundation, Kasetsart University, BIOTEC, NSTDA, and Generation Challenge Programs.
Homthadokkham 8 (HTDK 8), developed by Laos PDR’s National Agriculture and Forestry Research Institute or NAFRI, is the aromatic, high yielding and broad spectrum blast resistance glutinous rice variety. Crossbreeding between TDK8 (female) which is the high yielding variety and wide adaptation but non-aromatic with RGD10033-77-MAS-22 (male) which carries fragrance and blast resistance gene. RGD10033-77-MAS-22 was developed by the Rice Gene Discovery Unit, Kasetsart University Khamphaengsaen Campus with support from Innovative Plant Biotechnology and Precision Agriculture Research Team, BIOTEC. This breeding, commenced in 2013, aims to improve TDK8 to become aromatic and broad spectrum blast resistance by using Marker assisted selection (MAS). The best line RGD13300-229-2-5-MAS-4-MAS-4-B was currently picked up. Among the desirable traits of HTDK8 received from the parents include high yielding, waxy rice, semi-dwarf plant type, good resistance to lodging; growth duration of 130-135 days; wide adaptability and non-photoperiod sensitivity.
The Rice Research Center, Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry of Lao PDR had disseminated the seeds to 5 main targets of rice growing provinces: Sayaboury, Vientiane, Vientiane capital, Bolikhamsay and Khammoune for cultivation as well as for commercial production.
Posted on 26 September 2020.