The institute's biotechnology programme started with thefunding from Rockefeller in theyear 1989 and the activities included anther culture and somaclonal variation for sheath blight tolerance and genome mapping for gall midge resistance. In the year 1993, work on molecular characterization of bacterial blight andblast pathogenes occurring in eastern india and marker-assisted breeding for bacterial blight and blast resistancegot started through an ICAR-IRRI collaborative project through the Asian Rice Biotechnology Network programme which is now being funded by IRRI, Rockefeller Foundation and ICAR. In 1995, the institute has started collaborating with the International Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology at New Delhi on DNA fingerprinting of gall midge biotypes and mapping of gall midge resistance genes in rice.

The programmes on bacterial blight, blast and gall midge envisage utilization of marker-assisted breeding for pest and disease resistance based on the knowledtge gained on population structure on the pest populations and identification of useful pest resistance genes. The third programme which deals with the production of transgenic plants with insect and disease resistance was initiated in the year 1999 through an ICAR-IRRI collaborative project with funds from Rockefeller Foundation.

  • Bacterial blight
  • Blast
  • Gall midge
  • Transgenic plants