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Evolution of wild cereals during 28 years of global warming in Israel

Nevo, E., Fu, Y.B., Pavlicek, T., Khalifa, S., Tavasi, M., Beiles, A. (2012). Evolution of wild cereals during 28 years of global warming in Israel, 109(9), 3412-3415. http://dx.doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1121411109

Abstract

Climate change is a major environmental stress threatening bio-diversity andhuman civilization. The best hope to secure staple food for humans and animal feed by future crop improvement depends on wild progenitors. We examined 10 wild emmer wheat (Triticum dicoccoides Koern.) populations and 10 wild barley (Hordeum spontaneum K. Koch) populations in Israel, sampling them in 1980 and again in 2008, and performed phenotypic and genotypic analyses on the collected samples. We witnessed the profound adaptive changes of these wild cereals in Israel over the last 28 y in flowering time and simple sequence repeat allelic turnover. The revealed evolutionary changes imply unrealized risks present in genetic resources for crop improvement and human food production.

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