Special News ReportBOTANY

Cashing in on Seed Banks' Novel Genes

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Science  22 Aug 1997:
Vol. 277, Issue 5329, pp. 1042
DOI: 10.1126/science.277.5329.1042

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Seed banks hold more than 6 million germ plasm samples, mostly seeds, covering some 100 crop species and their wild relatives. But as Cornell University plant breeders Steven Tanksley and Susan McCouch contend in an article on page 1063 of this issue, plant breeders have failed to exploit these banks. The Cornell group's own efforts to breed new varieties of rice, using seeds from these banks, shows just how useful these vast genetic resources can be.