Doubled haploid production

Page last updated: Tuesday, 26 March 2024 - 12:21pm

An efficient and innovative plant tissue culture program that produces wheat and barley doubled haploid (DH) lines for Australian plant breeding companies and researchers at DPIRD and other Australian institutions. The program also has capacity to work on other crop species as required.

Start date: 1993
Finish date: Ongoing


The Cereal Doubled Haploid Program is a well-established program and delivers approximately 15,000 doubled haploid (DH) wheat and barley lines annually to breeding companies and researchers, both at DPIRD and other Australian research institutions. It is one of two wheat DH programs and the only barley DH program in Australia. The anther culture protocols for wheat and barley DH production have been developed and refined at DPIRD over many years. Recently, several specialist DH populations have also been developed for DPIRD researchers including canola and triticale.

Doubled haploid production is an important tool for rapidly generating fixed lines and can save time in variety development. At DPIRD, researchers have developed anther culture protocols where immature pollen cells (haploid microspores) are diverted from their normal developmental pathway to one of embryogenesis and haploid plant development.

Following a chromosome-doubling step, the resulting doubled haploid or ‘DH’ plants are fully fertile and 100% homozygous (fixed or true breeding) at all loci and are valuable tools for breeding, genetic research, and gene mapping.

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