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You Are Here Research > SNP Consortium

Invitation to Join NSA Sunflower SNP Consortium

The National Sunflower Association (NSA), in conjunction with the USDA and sunflower seed companies has established the NSA Sunflower SNP Consortium to help sunflower plant breeders create new sunflower hybrids as quickly as possible through the application of state-of-the-art marker assisted breeding technology. Application of this technology by plant breeders will give sunflower growers access to hybrids with resistance to such perennial disease problems as Rust, Downy Mildew, Powdery Mildew, and Sclerotinia more quickly and with much greater precision than what is possible using traditional plant breeding methods. This technology can also be used to capture specific oil traits and insect resistance traits.

NSA has already identified over 7000 usable SNP markers and has assigned map location to about 2600 SNP markers on sunflower genetic map. Currently, NSA is mapping the remaining SNP markers on the sunflower genetic map using two other mapping populations that offer the ability to capture these makers on the sunflower genetic map. NSA's goal is to complete development of a high density SNP based genetic map by end of 2012.

During the initial phase of this project, NSA consortium members obtained a high density genomic imprint on their respective sunflower lines using SNP markers. This information will now help breeders to identify SNP markers linked to specific defensive and quality traits using association mapping techniques. This information will allow BDI to establish a standard genomic suite of 384 SNP markers based on Linkage Disequilibrium, polymorphic values, and uniform genomic distribution for usage in routine marker breeding projects such as QTL mapping, marker assisted backcrossing, marker assisted selection and genomic selection.

The NSA invites you to join the NSA Sunflower SNP Consortium. Requirements for access to these molecular mark tools include membership in the NSA and payment of a $25,000 Consortium membership fee. All funds generated by this program will be reinvested by the NSA board of directors into the further development of molecular tools for the rapid advancement of sunflower breeding. Your membership has a number of advantages listed below.


Ability to genotype your proprietary inbred lines using the NSA 384 Sunflower SNP Panel.
An immediate characterization of relatedness between USDA lines and your own germplasm.
Having your inbred lines genotyped with the NSA 384 Sunflower SNP Panel will enable you to identify polymorphisms between potential parents for a breeding program or for a QTL study.
Dendogram and structure analysis information will help you identify heterotic groups.
By joining the consortium you will obtain access to this information at a fraction of the cost of obtaining this information on your own.
The NSA Sunflower SNP Consortium may share costs and information in marker discovery projects of common interest.
The NSA Sunflower SNP Consortium members may identify future opportunities for SNP marker-based collaboration such as genome-wide association mapping or QTL studies.
NSA Sunflower SNP Consortium members may find business opportunities for their elite inbreds among the membership.

Further Information:
1. To learn how you can join the Consortium call John Sandbakken at the NSA 701-328-5102 or email

2. For technical information on the Consortium call Quentin Schultz, President of BDI at: 715-426-0246 or email at

3. To learn more about potential Consortium partnerships within the seed industry, call Steve Kent, President of Seeds2000 and chair of the NSA Research Committee at (800) 874-9253 and email

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