Germ Plasm

There has been a collection of one hundred and thirty maize inbreds. The inbreds were named as the “University Maize Inbreds (UMI)”. These genotypes are used in the estimation of phytate phosphorus, total phosphorus, iron, zinc and beta carotene.


Maize has ten chromosomes (n =10). The combined length of all the chromosomes is about 1500 cM. These chromosomes have the genes and the markers which are the repositories of the hereditary informations. The chromosomes are numbered one to ten and are divided into bins where the reported alleles are placed at their corresponding positions as molecular markers.

1. Phenotype

Maize phenotypes such as height of the plant, position of the cob, position of the tassel, number of leaves per plant, number of cobs per plant, number of branches per tassel, height of the tassel, length of the leaf, breadth of the leaf, number of rows per cob, number of columns per cob, weight of hundred seeds, colour of the kernel etc., are measured and the recorded values have been updated.

2. Mutant Phenotype

The inbreds with higher phytate phosphorus contents are pollen and seed treated using ethyl methane sulphonate. The M0 seeds are selfed and forwarded to the M1 M2 and M3 generations. High Inorganic Phosphorus assay was performed in each generation in order to select the mutant lines with high inorganic phosphorus and correspondingly low phytate phosphorus contents (estimated by means of the Wheeler and Ferrel method - 1971). The mutants are characterized using twenty SSR and forty RAPD markers. Out of these, only one RAPD marker namely, OPBB 09 showed accountable polymorphism for low phytate lines.