National Research Council of Italy

Institute of Biosciences and BioResources

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IBBR publication #2099

Genetic resources of vegetable crops and their safeguarding in Italy

Laghetti G, Bisignano V, Urbano M

Horticulture international journal 2 (3): 73-75. (2018)
doi: 10.15406/hij.2018.02.00029

Italy belongs to the Mediterranean gene centre proposed by Vavilov and is rich in endemic rare plants and many vegetables, crops that belong to about 40 species. Horticultural landraces are a source of useful genes as well as a cultural heritage of extraordinary importance. They are characterized by a specific adaptation to the environmental and cultivation conditions of the particular area where they have been selected, so playing a crucial role in order to maintain and improve the efficiency and resilience of production systems. Vegetable crops, even if less threatened by genetic erosion than other crops, would benefit of in situ and ex situ conservation that are complementary both for taking in account agronomic, environmental and economic changes and for reintroducing lost germplasm into the original cultivation areas.

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