Lens culinaris

Overview
GenusLens
Speciesculinaris
Common NameCultivated Lentil
AbbreviationL.culinaris

Lentil (Lens culinaris Medik.) is an important pulse crop with annual production of 3-4 Mt across 70 countries (Cubero et al. 2009. DOI 10.1079/9781845934873.0000; pg. 13). Lentils are a good source of protein, carbohydrates, micronutrients and vitamins for human nutrition and is consumed in more than 120 countries. Furthermore, their small seed size and flat shape make them relatively quick cooking and easily decorticated compared to most other grain legumes (Sharpe et al. 2013. BMC Genomics. DOI 10.1186/1471-2164-14-192). The Lentil plant has a bushy growth habit with a height of about 40 cm; the seeds are lens-shaped and usually grow two per pod.

Breeding at the University of Saskatchewan

Market Classes: Large Green, Medium Green, Small Green, Small Red, Extra Small Red, as well as, a Few Minor Specialty Classes.

Breeding Objectives: High Yield, Lodging Tolerance, Appropriate Size, Shape, Seed Coat Colour & Quality, and Resistance to Ascochyta Blight, Anthracnose, Stemphylium Blight & Botrytis .

Germplasm Data
The following germplasm data is currently available:
Stock TypeCount
Single Cross2,321
Single Cross2,321
Triple Cross1,498
Triple Cross1,498
Individual1,025
Individual1,025
DNA472
DNA472
Multiple Cross365
Multiple Cross365
variety358
variety358
Backcross243
Backcross243
Double Cross126
Double Cross126
Population58
Population58
Sequence & Variant Data
The following sequence and variant data are currently present:
Feature TypeCount
marker56,562
marker56,562
SNP52,183
SNP52,183
contig28,939
contig28,939
EST9,513
EST9,513
MNP1,543
MNP1,543
read_pair1,206
read_pair1,206
indel789
indel789
Nutritional Facts

Lentils, raw (dry weight)

Energy
343.00
kcal
Carbohydrate, by difference
60.08
g
Fiber, total dietary
30.50
g
Sugars, total
2.03
g
Projects
2015 to 2019
Development of improved lentil cultivars well-adapted to the local environment is an on-going process in the breeding program and is critical for long-term genetic gain. Recent climate instability adds another layer of complexity to breeding efforts. Continued genetic improvement of lentil will, therefore, involve the introduction of new alleles that extend beyond the existing adapted pool of germplasm. Our goal in AGILE is to enhance the productivity and quality of Canadian lentils by expediting the expansion of genetic diversity of the Canadian lentil germplasm base with the use of genomic technologies.
2016 to 2018
A diverse collection of lentil accessions is being phenotyped for days to flower and screened against potential flowering time genes Identified by other researcher groups. In addition to the confirmation and the development of markers useful for the prediction of flowering time in northern temperate (Sask.) conditions, the identification of other candidate flowering time genes are goals of this project.
2017
This project is being conducted with 15 strains belonging to the species R. leguminosarum, R. lentils, R. bangladeshense, R. binae and the lentil variety CDC Maxim in Sutherland, Saskatoon. The experiment is replicated 8 times for a total of 120 plots. At flowering I will be measuring: number of nodules (NN), location in the root (LO), color (C), nodule dry weight (NDW), root dry weight (RDW), occupancy (O). At maturity: number of pots per plant (NPP), seeds per pot (SPP), Thousand seed weight (TSW) and yield (Y).
2017
This project is being conducted in the agriculture greenhouses with the 7 Lens species and the commercial strain of R. leguminosarum BASF 4035.
2017
This population between Eston (L. culinaris) and IG 72623 (L. odemensis) is being evaluated to investigate the genetic and phenotypic variability for agronomic and growth habit and to identify the molecular mechanisms underlying the quantitative variation for these traits in wild and cultivated lentils.
2014 to 2017
This is an international project funded by the Global Crop Diversity Trust aimed at evaluating cultivated x wild lentil introgression lines for multiple traits in multiple environments.
2013 to 2016
Our approach to sequencing the lentil genome is two-fold. First, we are generating a high quality draft genome for a single lentil genotype (CDC Redberry), including bulk sequencing, assembly of chromosomal ‘pseudomolecules’, and gene prediction and annotation. Secondly, we are re-sequencing various lentil accessions from around the globe to reveal the breath of genetic potential present in our germplasm resources. The outcome will give us i) an understanding of how modern breeding has re-shaped the lentil genome, ii) identification of genes and genomic interval that control agronomic traits, and iii) discovery of many genetic polymorphisms for future marker development, that together will add considerable resources to the breeder’s toolbox for lentil genetic improvement. More importantly, the results of this project will allow us to leverage knowledge of important trait based on conservation of genome-based features with other legume crops (such as Medicago and chickpea).
2013 to 2016
Lentils are seen as a source for essential vitamins and minerals for human nutrition, but due to the high anti-nutritional factors of raffinose family oligosaccharides the consumption of lentils are being limited. Other methods to lower the levels of these RFOs are costly, and that is why an alternative strategy to develop varieties of lentil with lower levels is being implemented.
2016
Lentil recombinant inbred lines (LR-86) derived from a cross between Lupa # 7 (L. culinaris) x BGE016880 (L. orientalis) were evaluated in five replications in 2016 in the field at the Crop Science Field Lab of the University of Saskatchewan. Days to flowering, days to maturity, plant height at maturity, shattering percentage, number of seeds per plant, and seed yield per plant were recorded. The population was genotyped and mapped using a genotyping-by-sequencing approach. Major QTLs for shattering resistance were identified on LGs 4 and 7. In 2017, the population was grown in two locations (Investigation field and Sutherland) in three replications to confirm the identified QTL for shattering resistance.
2012 to 2015
This group is involved in a wide range of biotechnology projects that accelerate the legume breeding process. Double-haploid technology has been achieved in both chickpea and field pea by the CDC group in collaboration with colleagues in France and Australia. Efforts are underway to adapt this technology to lentil. Improving efficiency and integrating these techniques into routine breeding programs to enhance genetic gain are important long-term goals.

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