Scientists at the University of Queensland (UQ) got the inspiration to
develop the world's first 'speed breeding' procedures from National
Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) experiments that involved using
continuous light on wheat triggering early reproduction in the plants.
Speed breeding technique which aims to cut the length of plant breeding
cycles, has been used largely for research purposes, but is now being
adopted by industry. UQ scientists, in partnership with Dow AgroSciences,
have used the technique to develop the new 'DS Faraday' wheat variety due
for release to industry in 2018.
According to UQ Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Food Innovation
(QAAFI) Senior Research Fellow Dr. Lee Hickey, DS Faraday is a high protein,
milling wheat with tolerance to pre-harvest sprouting. Dr. Hickey explained
that genes for grain dormancy were introduced, so it can better handle wet
weather at harvest time, a problem that wheat scientists in Australia have
been trying to solve for more than 40 years.