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Diversity and conservation priorities of crop wild relatives in Mexico

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  26 January 2019

Aremi R. Contreras-Toledo
Affiliation:
National Genetic Resources Center, National Forestry, Crops and Livestock Research Institute, Tepatitlán de Morelos, Jalisco 47600, Mexico School of Bioscience, University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham B15 2TT, UK
Moisés Cortés-Cruz
Affiliation:
National Genetic Resources Center, National Forestry, Crops and Livestock Research Institute, Tepatitlán de Morelos, Jalisco 47600, Mexico
Denise E. Costich
Affiliation:
Maize and Wheat Germplasm Bank, International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT), Texcoco, Estado de Mexico 56237, Mexico
Ma. de Lourdes Rico-Arce
Affiliation:
Royal Botanic Gardens Kew, Richmond, Surrey TW9 3AE, UK
Joana Magos Brehm
Affiliation:
School of Bioscience, University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham B15 2TT, UK
Nigel Maxted
Affiliation:
School of Bioscience, University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham B15 2TT, UK
Corresponding

Abstract

Crop wild relatives (CWR) are valuable resources for crop breeding due to their close genetic relationship to the cultivated plants and their wide genetic variation, allowing the introgression of desirable traits into the crops, such as resistance to plant pests and diseases or adaptability to climate change. Mexico is a centre of agrobiodiversity, including CWR, but climate change, and other factors, are contributing to the loss of important Mexican CWR genetic diversity. The in situ and ex situ conservation status of Mexican priority CWR were assessed through a gap analysis as part of a national CWR conservation strategy for Mexico, to ensure the long-term preservation and improve the availability of these genetic resources. A set of 310 priority CWR taxa, previously identified as part of the national CWR inventory for Mexico, were analysed. Species distribution modelling and ecogeographic diversity analyses were used to detect gaps in in situ and ex situ conservation at taxon and ecogeographic levels. Priority target sites were identified throughout the country for complementary in situ and ex situ conservation of these taxa. The results obtained allow us to make recommendations for immediate conservation actions, thus helping to mitigate the threats to Mexican agrobiodiversity and enhance both national and global food security.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © NIAB 2019 

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