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How can a network like MusaNet help in facilitating exchange of Musa genetic resources?

Roux N., De Langhe E., Domaingue R., Ruas M., Thomas J., Molina A., Gaidashova S., Amoncho A., Dita M.A., Town C., Van den Bergh I., Van Den Houwe I., Gueco L., Horry J.P., Laliberté B.. 2011. In : ISHS/ProMusa Symposium Bananas and plantains : toward sustainable global production and improved uses, Salvador, Bahia, Brazil, 10-14 October 2011 : Abstracts. s.l. : s.n., p. 131-132. International ISHS-ProMusa Symposium on bananas and plantains, 2011-10-10/2011-10-14, Salvador (Brésil).

A comprehensive understanding of the existing Musa diversity and its potential uses, is crucial, not only to genebank curators, molecular biologists, breeders, phytopathologists and other Musa researchers, but also to the rural households most dependent on the crop for their food and income. The Musa genetic resource community developed the implementation of the global Musa genetic resources conservation and use strategy, and has recently launched the global Musa genetic resources network, MusaNet. The network strives to improve the conservation and safe dissemination of Musa genetic resources, and also seeks to fill the gaps in our knowledge of the Musa genepool through increased characterization and multi-locational evaluation efforts. MusaNet will enhance the utilization of genetic resources and therefore support their conservation. The function of MusaNet is to mobilize diverse expertise and perspectives, define priorities and build consensus around an agreed agenda for joint action. Expertise is mobilized through four thematic groups: i) Genetic diversity, taxonomy and characterization, íi) Germplasm evaluation; iii) Germplasm information and documentation and iv) Germplasm conservation. Linking those thematic groups with the four Musa regional networks will assure that conservation and sustainable use will be at global, regional and national levels. Indeed, without rational management of genetic resources we may lose them irremediably. Comprehensive conservation and sustainable use of Musa genetic resources can only take place if all banana-producing countries agree to share their resources and information. MusaNet will help genebanks around the world to access greater genetic resources by implementing the international treaty of plant and genetic resources for food and agriculture. Networking is vital to the implementation of the global Musa conservation and use strategy; both for sharing out the multidisciplinary characterization and for reaching consensus on joint actions to expand the coverage of collections, and to rationalize and exchange them. This paper will describe and analyze how a genetic resource network such as MusaNet can be built and boost the Musa research community to share and use sustainably Musa genetic resources.

Mots-clés : musa; ressource génétique végétale; système d'information

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