Minutes of the Barley Crop Germplasm Committee Meeting
Seattle Executive Pacific Plaza Hotel
October 31, 2004

Attending:  Brian Steffenson, Kay Simmons, Allan Stoner, Cynthia Henson, Mike Bonman, Steve Ullrich, Dolores Mornhinweg, Kevin Smith, Gary Muehlbauer, Harold Bockelman, Nancy Robertson, and David Ianson

Meeting opened at 2:00pm by Chair Brian Steffenson

Minutes of the informal meeting of the Barley CGC held in Brno, Czech Republic on June 22nd were reviewed and approved.

Kay Simmons handed out and discussed the National Program Staff report.

Allan Stoner presented the National Plant Germplasm System report.  One result of the USDA-OIG audit is that transgenics will need to be tracked carefully in the system, including changes to GRIN germplasm orders disclaimers.  GRIN is likely to be adopted by the Mexican national program, as it was previously by Canada.  Efforts are continuing to provide connectivity between GRIN and other databases, e.g. SINGER.

Harold Bockelman passed out a report on the current status of the NSGC barley collection, including recent PI assignments and evaluation/descriptor data presently in GRIN. 

There was discussion of the Fusarium Head Blight data, which is not yet included in GRIN.  The committee concluded that the data needs to be included in GRIN, perhaps in a narrative indicating the accessions with the best levels of resistance.  Harold Bockelman will work with Brian Steffenson to accomplish this. 

Mike Bonman described a paper to be published in Crop Science which analyzed barley disease resistance data geographically. 

Dolores Mornhinweg discussed the new biotypes of the Russian Wheat Aphid.  So far the resistance is holding up in barley.

Cynthia Henson described possible new evaluations of barley related to bioactive components for health benefits, including anti-oxidants, beta-glucans, and others unique to barley.

A 10 minute Red Hook break was called, after which the committee continued discussion of Cynthia Henson’s report.

Steve Ullrich suggested that evaluation of the barley collection for resistance to root-rotting pathogens, including Rhizoctonia solani, could be valuable to breeders in the Pacific Northwest.  Resistance has been difficult to find.

Gary Muehlbauer and Kevin Smith discussed the possibility of analyzing the core subset (or a portion of it) with a set of simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers.

Brian Steffenson reported on the accessions of Hordeum vulgare subsp. spontaneum he has obtained from Jan Valkoun of ICARDA (Aleppo, Syria) and also barley accessions he has obtained from the  Igor Loskutov of the N. I. Vavilov Institute (St. Petersburg, Russia).  These accessions will fill some gaps in the NSGC barley collection.  He continues his search for FHB resistance.

David Ianson and Nancy Robertson from the Arctic Plant Germplasm Unit in Palmer, Alaska, described the work they are doing and their interest in barley evaluations that could be conducted in their northern latitude.  The common barley diseases (BYDV, net blotch, spot blotch, scald) occur at their location.  BYDV is widespread in late-planted barley.  The 20+ hour days also provide an opportunity to evaluate agronomic and nutritional traits (e.g. days to flowering, plant height, beta-glucan) in comparison to Aberdeen.

Brian Steffenson thanked the committee for the help in getting the updated barley crop vulnerability statement finished and submitted by September 30.

Brian Steffenson described an exploration proposal to collect wild and cultivated barley and wild wheats in Turkey in 2005.  His Turkish post-doc was key to help put this proposal together.  Collecting plant germplasm in Turkey requires some benefit-sharing for the proposal to be accepted on their side.

Allan Stoner described the Global Crop Diversity Trust.  This will be a global fund to support preservation of plant germplasm in countries where the monetary resources are not available.

Gary Muehlbauer, Kevin Smith, and Brian Steffenson announced submission of the Barley Coordinated Agricultural Project to USDA-CSREES.  The overall theme of the barley CAP is to integrate and utilize state-of-the-art genomic tools and approaches in plant breeding programs, thereby facilitating the development of superior barley cultivars and access to agronomic and economically important genes.

The meeting was adjourned at 4:35pm.