Transgenes in maize genetic resources

Contributors to this page: CIMMYT, Mexico (Suketoshi Taba), with inputs also received from IITA, Nigeria (Dominique Dumet), EMBRAPA, Brazil (Flavia Teixeira), USDA/ARS/NC7, ISU, USA (Mark Millard).

Transgene detection in seed banks is generally only important for those crops that are known to have undergone transgenic events, and where transgenic varieties were used in the area of collection or donation. However, transgenic maize has been detected inadvertently in many countries that officially have no transgenic maize.

List of current transgenes

The list below was compiled from AGBIOS.

Determination methods

All germplasm coming into the genebank should receive clearance by seed health laboratories, including the presence of any GMO. The following tests can be carried out for each specific type of potential transgene.

More details about molecular protocols can be found at: CIMMYT’s website (1.9MB)

Recording information during transgene detection

See also specific details about transgenes on this website.

The following information should be recorded for each step:

References and further reading

AGBIOS GM crop database [online]. Available from: Date accessed: 15 September 2010.

CIMMYT. 2005. Laboratory Protocols: CIMMYT Applied Molecular Genetics Laboratory. Third Edition. Mexico, D.F.: CIMMYT.
ISBN: 9686923306

Position Statement on Genetically Modified Crop Varieties, CIMMYT.

Scott MP, editor. 2009. Transgenic maize. Methods and protocols. Series Methods in Molecular Biology, Vol. 526. 200pp.

The Genebanks

The 11 CGIAR genebanks currently conserve 730,000 of cereals and grain legumes, forage crops, tree species, root and tuber crops, bananas and crop wild relatives.