Genetic Fidelity Testing and Virus indexing of Micro Propagated Sugarcane
Tissue culture technique offers great promise for the production of quality planting material on account of disease free and true to type plants produced through micro-propagation techniques. The need for a certification programme for the tissue culture plants is imperative since inadvertent micro-propagation of virus infected plants will not only result in its poor performance, but also in undesirable spread of viruses wherever such plants are grown. Also, failure to use prescribed standard protocols will result in variations in the plants produced. The variants in tissue culture raised plants could affect yield, genetic fidelity and carry infection of viruses, and other fastidious pathogens, which are difficult to diagnose. To address this area Department of Biotechnology, Government of India accredited laboratories with potential for virus indexing and fidelity testing through National Certification System for Tissue Culture Raised Plants (NCS-TCP). Under this programme Sugarcane Breeding Institute has accredited labs viz. Biotechnology lab for genetic fidelity testing and Plant Pathology lab for virus indexing. This programme will support the tissue culture industry for the commercialization of tested virus free and high quality planting material. The tissue culture laboratories involved in micro propagation of sugarcane are invited to utilize our testing facility to detect sugarcane viruses in sugarcane seedlings and fidelity testing. These services would ensure supply of disease-free quality sugarcane seedlings and eventually results in higher productivity.