Improvement of The Yield and Quality of Poplar Biomass for the United States Bio Fuels Industry

Award Information
Agency: Department of Agriculture
Branch: N/A
Contract: N/A
Agency Tracking Number: 2009-01117
Amount: $79,904.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2008
Solicitation Year: N/A
Solicitation Topic Code: N/A
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
121 SW SALMON ST STE 1020, Portland, OR, 97204
DUNS: 601055739
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Brian Stanton
 Managing Director
 (503) 274-0438
Business Contact
 Brian Stanton
Title: Managing Director
Phone: (503) 274-0438
Research Institution
Hybrid poplar plantations will play a large role in the supply of cellulosic feedstock, in meeting the Nation's 30x30 goals for the renewable transportation fuels industry. The success of the poplar plantation industry will be contingent on elite plant material that has undergone hybridization for improved agronomic characteristics. Hybridization between the cottonwoods and the poplars has been the preferred method of generating elite varieties. We propose to integrate molecular tools into a traditional hybridization program to breed a new class of varieties that are capable of bio-fuels production with improved conversion economics. To accomplish this, we are currently conducting an association genetics study to identify genes controlling cellulose production in black cottonwood, based on single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP's). We now propose a comparative study with black poplar to complete our understanding of how best to re-design a hybridization program using molecular markers and bioinformatics. A large black poplar collection will be cloned and established at two contrasting locations in the Pacific Northwest. We will sequence the same lignin and cellulose biosynthetic pathway genes identified in the black cottonwood study to discover new SNPs that can be used in a Phase II association study. The comparative study will advance our understanding of the manner in which reciprocal parental populations should be managed in a marker-assisted breeding program for improved first-generation hybridization for enhanced bio-fuels application.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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