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The richness of the olive patrimony, accounting for more than 1,200 varieties still under cultivation, over 2,000 represented by a few or single ancient trees, all natural populations of wild plants spread along the Mediterranean shores and the related forms growing in Africa and Asia, is challenging scientists, olive producers and genetic resource managers. Particularly difficult resulted to identify and reorganize the accessions present in the collections of olive varieties and to find correct and mutually agreed data, at molecular, agronomical and morphophysiological level.

The objectives of this WP focus on the construction of common protocols and the sharing of  information on the identity and performance of the main olive cultivars, paying attention on the contribution of the wild related forms. In particular, we aim to:

- Select the most outstanding effective DNA markers derived from ongoing genomics projects;

- Establish common protocols for molecular characterization;

- Develop shared association mapping approaches for the identification of the genome regions affecting the agronomical performance;

- Genotyping the wild and domesticated resources;

- Develop a common database including molecular and agro-biological information on the most important olive resources.

Description of Work

  • Task 2.1. Gathering information on the olive cultivar patrimony present in the main collections of olive genetic resources

  • Task Leader: SUPAGRO
  • Task 2.2. Developing new nuclear and cytoplasmic DNA markers able to discriminate cultivars, wild plants and related subspecies

  • Task Leader: AUA
  • Task 2.3. Establishing a high-throughput platform to characterize at a massive scale all the accessions present in the main olive cultivar collections

  • Task Leader: MAICH
  • Task 2.4. Database construction for olive cultivars

  • Task Leader: CNR-IBBR
  • Task 2.5. Toward the identification of markers useful for the assisted selection

  • Task Leader: IFAPA

Deliverables & Milestones

  • D.2.1. Core list of varieties (about 200) representing the main olive oil producing countries (M12)

  • D.2.2.1. Development of new SNP markers able to discriminate among cultivars (M36)

  • D.2.2.2. Development of new polynucleotide-SSR markers able to discriminate among cultivars (M36)

  • D.2.2.3. Development of new cytoplasmic (plastidial and mitochondrial) markers able to discriminate cultivars, wild plants and related subspecies (M24)

  • D.2.3.1 Establishment of a high-throughput platform for olive cultivars molecular characterization (M12)

  • D.2.3.2 First release of a common set of molecular profiles of the olive cultivars (M24)

  • D.2.3.2 Final release of a common set of molecular profiles of the olive cultivars, wild populations and related subspecies (M36)
  • D.2.4.1. First release of a molecular profiles database for olive cultivars (M36)

  • D.2.4.2. Final release of a common molecular database for olive cultivars (M48)

  • D.2.5.1. Molecular profiles of olive varieties previously characterized for agronomical/phenotypical characters (M48)
  • D.2.5.2. Identification of the most relevant aspects to explore by association mapping strategies (M36)
  • D.2.6 Seminars and Workshops related to each secondment (Throughout the project duration)