Legume crops including chickpea (Cicer arieratum), common bean (Phaseolus vularis), lentil (Lens culinaris) and pea (Pisum sativum) are known for their nitrogen fixing abilities which decrease the need for commerial fertilizer and thus the cost and environmental impact of growing these crops. In Canada, the main growing regions of legume crops is southern Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba, as well as, a smaller band in southern Ontario (Pulse Canada). Furthermore, legume crops grown in Canada account for approximately 35% global food legume trade each year and Canada is a dominant player in the world trade of peas and lentils (Pulse Canada, 2012).
KnowPulse aims to provide a breeder-friendly interface that leverages relationships between phenotypic, genotypic, genetic and genomic data within and among legume species. Basically, this resource intends to integrate phenotypic, genotypic, genetic and genomic data and provide tools to manage it. Furthermore, we expect that these tools would allow breeders to associate marker genotypes with breeding materials, enhance crossing design and improve germplasm development strategies.
Saskatchewan falls directly in the middle of the main food legume growing region in Canada with chicpea, common bean, lentil and pea growing regions. As such the University of Saskatchewan, College of Agriculture is a major Canadian Research Center for legume molecular research and breeding in all four aforementioned crops.