South Dakota State University (SDSU) has released soybean germplasm lines to help plant breeders elsewhere incorporate desirable qualities such as high protein and low-linolenic acid into their own soybean varieties.

“A germplasm line is a collection of genes, essentially, that has some good attributes. These are tools that plant breeders can use to incorporate traits that they want into lines that they want to release as varieties,” says SDSU Extension Crops Specialist Bob Hall, the chairman of SDSU’s Plant Science Variety Recommendation/Release Committee.

Guo-Liang Jiang, who leads SDSU’s soybean breeding program, says germplasm lines help producers because of the advantages they provide to breeders by focusing desired traits in the line.

“The breeders can use them as parents to make new crosses and then to incorporate these unique characteristics into other varieties adapted to their environments,” Jiang says. “That will ultimately benefit the growers. They will get new varieties derived from these lines.”

The new germplasm lines will be available to both public and private sector breeders, and to soybean researchers, as well.

SD00-1501 is a high-protein and high-meal conventional line with acceptable yield and oil content, maturity group 0. The protein content at 13% moisture averages 39.5-43.4%, and average protein meal was 51.5%. Oil content was 16.3-16.7%. Average yield was 39-44 bu./acre, nearly 10% lower than the variety Surge, but 23% higher than Traill. Though the germplasm line is intended mainly for plant breeders and researchers, Jiang notes that the line could be grown by producers growing soybeans for certain markets such as the organic sector, tofu or soy milk. The line matures around Sept. 20, has a plant height of 33 in., seed quality of 2.0 and lodging score of 1.6. It has lower saturated fatty acids than Surge.

SD05-767 is a low-linolenic and good-quality conventional line with acceptable yield, maturity group 0 to 1. Linolenic acid is consistently lower than 3%, with an average of 2.6-2.8%. It also has good protein (37.2-40.1%) and oil content (17.5-18.2%) at 13% moisture. Yield averaged 40.5-46 bu., 8-10% lower than Surge, but 20% higher than Traill. The line can also be grown to meet specific requirements for low-linolenic oil. The plant matures in late September, reaches a height of 30 in., has seed quality of 2.2, a lodging score of 1.9 and lower saturated fatty acids than Surge.