Lathyrus diversity and crop improvement (Invited Review)

Vaz Patto and Rubiales review the current status and future prospects of Lathyrus diversity conservation and characterization.
<i>Lathyrus</i> diversity and crop improvement (Invited Review)
Lathyrus diversity and crop improvement (Invited Review)

The Lathyrus genus (Fabaceae) includes 160 species, some of which have economic importance as food, fodder and ornamental crops (mainly L. sativus, L. cicera and L. odoratus, respectively) and are cultivated in over 1.5 million ha worldwide. Vaz Patto and Rubiales review the current status and future prospects of Lathyrus diversity conservation and characterization, highlighting their use in L. sativus and L. cicera breeding. They conclude that efforts for improvement of these species should concentrate on the development of publicly available joint core collections, and on high-resolution genotyping. This should result in more efficient and faster breeding approaches, which are especially needed for these neglected, under-utilized Lathyrus species.