Following its meeting in Moscow in 2016, the 16th UPOV Working Group on Biochemical and Molecular Techniques (BMT) took place at La Rochelle (France) from 6-10 November 2017. Co-organised by GEVES and UPOV, the meeting brought together 75 participants from 23 countries.
Presentations were made by different technical experts, including from GEVES, followed by exchanges and proposals for applying molecular techniques in variety testing for plant registration and protection. In particular, the exchanges focused on developments in UPOV, new breeding techniques and their impact on DUS testing, and databases containing molecular data. There were lively discussions around the possible use of molecular markers as a criteria to facilitate DUS testing. The group also made decisions on improving the UPOV models on this matter which will lead to the modification of the associated UPOV reference document. A new initiative was launched in order to facilitate cooperation between institutes and countries working on the same species with a molecular approach.
The participants also visited GEVES’s site at Le Magneraud where GEVES presented its resources and expertise, in particular its management of seed collections for the Variety Study Department, and the BioGEVES laboratory facilities.
GEVES would like to thank all the participants for their contributions and fruitful discussions, and looks forward to further collaboration with the BMT working group. The next meeting will be held at Montevideo (Uruguay) in September 2018.
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