Department of Genetics and Plant Breeding       

Head  Dr. R.K.Pannu  (Dean, College of  Agriculture)




Department of Plant Breeding

Manual I for PGS-504 (pdf format)

Scheme:          B1 (NonPlan) Agri


  1. To impart theoretical knowledge of plant breeding to the students through course work, demonstrations, practical exercise and seminars.
  2. To guide PG research work, demonstrations, practical exercise and seminars.

Teaching Staff:

Professors: 5 

1.   Dr. M.S. Punia, PhD (Bulgaria), FAO Fellow (USA); Email:

2.   Dr. (Mrs.) Veena Chawla, Ph.D. (Sr. Scientist, Genetics)

3.   Dr. (Mrs.) Subhadra Singh,  Ph.D. (Sr. Scientist, Genetics) 

4.   Dr. Mukesh Kumar Saini, Ph.D., PDF (USA), (Asstt. Professor), ; Email:


  1. Germplasm evaluation for tolerance to abiotic and biotic stresses using morphophysiological, biochemical, invitro selection approaches and DNA markers.
  2. Breeding for low input genotypes through harnessing plant-microbe interactions.
  3. Evaluation of crop genotypes for better endues quality.
  4. Evaluation of genotypes for photothermo response.


  1. 68 M.Sc. and  32  PhD students have completed their degree since 1999.
  2. In last three years about 30 students have cleared NET Exam.
  3. Two thesis were awarded Jwahar Lal Nehru Award in the years 1995 and 2002.
  4. Students have also received Ram Dhan Singh Gold Medal (almost each year since institution of award) , Rajenderpal Singh Gold Medal, Ms. Manju Utreja Gold Medal and V.D. Kashyap Gold Medal.
  5. PG students have been receiving ICAR, CSIR (JRF and SRF), ICRISAT and Bhabha Atomic Scholarships.
  6. The Teaching Faculty have received outstanding teaching awards at National and departmental levels.
  7. The faculty of the teaching section has contributed immensely in all organizational events at the departmental levels and most of the activities at university level in the past.


  1. Excellent lab facilities exist for UG and PG practicals and PG Research in the area of Molecular markers, Tissue culture, Resistance Breeding and Cytogenetics.
  2. Field facilities are available for PG research.


  • Good audio-visual facilities for teaching and seminars for Overhead Projections, PowerPoint presentations, slide projections and Epidiascope exist in the section.


  • The section has developed comprehensive practical manuals on plant breeding and tissue culture techniques.


  1. The section has received international projects and students from Germany and Switzerland.
  2. The section has also received equipments as gifts from Germany and ICRISAT.
  3. The students allotted to supervisors in this section have done good research work under Sandwich Model of DAAD, Germany and collaborative research at ICRISAT, Hyderabad.


  1. Highly trained faculty with expertise in various facets of crop improvement trained in India and abroad.
  2. Congenial atmosphere for teaching and research.
  3. Best inter-personal and teacher-taught relations.





Field of Specialization for M/Sc. and Ph.D.

Biometrics, Resistance breeding and Cytogenetics

Required courses for




                Ph. D.



 PB 501, PB 502, PB 505, PB506, PB 509, PB591, Genet 501, Stat 401 and Stat 402



All requirements of M.Sc. courses  and Courses PB591, PB601, PB602 and Stat406


PB 201 : BASIC PRINCIPLES OF PLANT BREEDING (2+1)                SEM.  I


Plant Breeding as an art and science- a historical resume ; objectives and importance; allied disciplines as an aid to crop improvement;   concept of variability, qualitative and quantitative  characters, heritability, genetic advance;  centers of origin of different crops, evolution and domestication of major field crops; classification of crops based on their mode of reproduction, pollination control methods ; male sterility, self incompatibility, role of mutations and polyploidy in plant breeding;  apomixis.

Practicals:  Study of the floral structure of : wheat barley, cotton ,gram , pigeonpea, mustard, toria , sunflower, groundnut ,sugarcane, sorghum, rice, maize, cowpea  and bajra ; study of pollen viability; in vitro pollen germination; data recording

PB 202   BREEDING OF FIELD CROPS (2+1)                             SEM .   II


Principles of  breeding self and cross pollinated crops; plant introduction, pure line selection and mass selection; hybridization and its objectives; handling of hybrids / segregating populations in self  pollinated crops – pedigree, bulk , back cross and single seed descent methods; method of breeding cross pollinated crops- recurrent selection, composites, synthetics and development of hybrids;  ; breeding of major field crops i.e. cotton ,wheat, sorghum, rice, maize, sugarcane, oilseed crops ,pulse crops, forages, barley and bajra.

Practicals :  Emasculation, selfing and crossing in cotton, wheat, sorghum, rice, maize, sugarcane, oilseed crops, bajra, pulse crops, forages and barley; hybrid seed production in bajra, sorghum, sunflower, cotton, maize and rice

PB 40 I CROP IMPROVEMENT (3+1)          SEM.I


Pollination behaviour in relation to breeding methods; sexual and asexual reproduction; specific breeding objectives of major field crops; mechanisms promoting autogamy and allogamy; genetic basis of breeding self- and cross fertilized crops; seed classification; breeder seed production; seed certification regulations; classification of variability relative importance of different components of genetic variation in crop improvement; centers of origin, domestication; different breeding methods for developing varieties including composites/synthetics/hybrids of major field crops; use of general and specific combining ability in crop improvement; importance of varietal resistance and breeding for disease resistance; physiological breeding.

Practical: Selection of plant progenies in relation to breeding objectives; identification of varieties and hybrids of various crops in the field; practice of emasculation, pollination and selfing of different crops; prediction of performance of single and double crosses; visit to plant breeding laboratories of neighbouring states.



Cell division, gametogenesis and fertilization. Apomixis - its classification and use; male sterility and its uses in crop improvement; incompatibility mechanisms and their role in plant breeding; role of mutation and polyploidy in plant breeding; intra- and inter-specific hybridization; biotechnology and its role in the improvement of crop species.

Practical: Use of male sterility and self incompatibility in hybrids seed production; use of mutagens and colchicines; in vitro techniques; methods for producing distant hybrids.




History of Plant Breeding (Pre and post Mendelian era), Objectives of plant breeding,. Characteristics improved by plant breeding; genetic basis of breeding self- and cross - pollinated crops including mating systems and response to selection - nature of variability, components of variation, heritability and genetic advance, genotype-environment interaction, general and specific combining ability; plant introduction and role of plant genetic resourses in plant breeding , pure line theory; pure line selection and mass selection methods, line breeding, pedigree, bulk, backcross, single seed descent and multiline method; population breeding in self-pollinated crops (diallel selective mating approach), breeding methods in cross pollinated crops, population breeding-mass selection and ear-to-row methods; S1 and S2 progeny testing,  progeny selection schemes, recurrent selection schemes for intra and inter-population improvement and development of synthetics and composites; hybrid breeding - genetical and physiological basis of heterosis and inbreeding, production of inbreds, breeding approaches for improvement of inbreds,  predicting hybrid performance; seed production of hybrid and their parent varieties/inbreds, self incompatibility and male sterility in crop plants and their commercial exploitation; breeding methods in asexually/clonally propagated crops, concept of plant ideotype and its role in crop improvement. Plant breeders’ rights and their protection component and transgressive breeding.

Practical: Floral biology in self and cross pollinated species, selfing and crossing techniques. Selection methods in segregating populatios and evaluation of breeding material. Analysis of variance (ANOVA). Estimation of heritability and genetic advance, maintenance of experimental records. Hybrid seed production using male-sterility in field crops.



Role of genetics and cytogenetics in plant breeding; patterns of variation in cultivated and wild species; natural selection and changes in chromosome and gene frequencies in cultivated and wild species in response to changing environment; speciation and isolation mechanisms; chromosomal changes; alien additions and substitution lines; polyploidy - its classification, induction, inheritance and role in plant improvement; phylogeny and genome analysis; use of conventional and modern techniques for genome analysis (morphological, cytogenetic, genetical, biochemical and molecular) evolution and phylogenetic relationship of crop plants viz., wheat, rice, maize, sugarcane, brassica, cotton, pulses, forages etc. and their  related species; role of interspecific and intergeneric hybridization; barriers to crossability and methods to overcome it.

Practical: Cytology of some important crop plants and their related species including interspecific hybrids; pollen viability, pollen culture and photomicrography.

PB-503 BREEDING FOR QUALITY CHARACTERS (2+1)                                        SEM I


Quality traits in field crops-need and prospects for genetic improvement; genetics of quality traits and their components, heritability and association with yield, approaches and achievements in improvements of quality traits in specific crops, chemical composition of the grains, genetics and significance of storage proteins, evaluation of nutrition, cooking, ecological, baking and chapatti making properties. Chemical composition, genetics and evaluation of nutrition and cooking quality characters viz., amylase, geletanization temperature, gel consistency, kernel elongation ratio and aroma, properties of corn quality, starch speciality corn, high quality protein, biochemical and genetical studies of kernel mutants (opaque 2, floury 2 etc.). breeding methods for improvement of desired nutritional factors in major crops like wheat, rice, maize, bajra, barley, pulses, oilseeds, cotton, sugarcane and forages.

Practical : Estimation of quality traits in different crops.



Nature and classification of mutations; mutagens; factors affecting mutagenesis, role of mutation in field crops; biotechnology and its application in crop improvement, cell and tissue culture, micropropagation, in vitro screening for resistance to biotic and abiotic stresses, haploids, and double haploids (DH) production,  embryo culture, aneuploids, embryo rescue, somaclonal variation; protoplast culture and  protoplast fusion, production of transgenic plants; GMOs, biosafety issues, transgenic male sterility in heterosis breeding and hybrid seed production, molecular marker RFLPs, RAPDs, marker assisted selection, gene tagging and antisense RNA technology.

Practical : Use of physical and chemical mutagens; scoring of mutagenic efficiency and effectiveness; cell, tissue culture and transformation techniques for crop improvement, analysis of QTLs using enzyme and DNA patterns; techniques for marker aided selection for target traits; visit to distinguished laboratories engaged in molecular breeding.




Importance of resistance breeding in crop plants; nature and characteristics of environment stresses - soil and atmosphere, crop responses to different environmental stresses; adaptations; range of variability in germplasm ;parameters of resistance; inheritance mechanisms; screening techniques and breeding approaches to evolve tolerant/resistant genotypes.

Nature and mechanisms of resistance to diseases and insect pests; genetic variability in pathogens; genetics of host-parasite relationship; vertical and horizontal resistance; genetic uniformity and disease resistance; methods of breeding for diseases and insect pest resistance; multiline and multigene varieties; deployment of resistant genes, Shuttle breeding, transgenics in management of biotic and abiotic stresses, use of toxins, protease inhibitors, lactins, chitenases for insect pest management. 

Practical : Visual observation and evaluation on crop responses to selected stresses under field conditions; measurement of quantitative parameters; planning and designing of screening system; methods of screening for seed, air and soil borne diseases; creation of artificial epiphytotic conditions for important diseases and insect pests; screening for vertical and horizontal resistance; recording of data for diseases and insect pest reaction; Demonstration of gene for gene concept.



Foundations of biometrical concepts; continuous variation - its nature and origin; polygene concept; scales and transformation; components of means and variance; heritability; prediction of response; mating designs; combining ability line x tester and diallel analysis; genotype x environment interaction and stability; genetic divergence; genotypic and phenotypic correlations; prediction of correlated response; linear and multiple regression; path-coefficients and discriminant function in plant selection; augmented design in plant breeding. Objectives, types and design of trials. BLUP approach, genetic diversity and genotype x enivronment interaction in relation to heterosis

Practical : Tukey’s test for additivity estimation of phenotypic and genotypic correlations; Cavalli’s joint scaling test; estimation of genetic components of variation in segregating generations, line x tester and diallel analysis for combining ability; multiple regression path-coefficient and discriminant function; measurement of genotype x environment interaction and stability; genetic divergence. Randomised block design with several observations per cell; analysis of covariance; progeny row trials; compact family blocks and augmented designs; balanced incomplete block designs; groups of experiments



Origin, phylogenetic relationship, history, genetic improvement through conventional and contemporary breeding methods such as introduction, clonal selection, hybridization, mutation, polyploidy and heterosis for important medicinal plants viz., isabgol, mulhaiti, periwinkle, sarapgandha (Rauvolfia serpentina), poppy, Dioscorea, ipecae, cinchona, belladona, senna, foxglove and ergot, Digitalis, Solanum spp.; aromatic plants viz., mentha, palmarosa, lemon grass, citronella grass, vetiver, geranium, dewana and basil (Ocimum sp.) jasmine, saffron, lavender, rosemary patchouli; and under-utilized crops like fababean, ricebean,, amaranthus, jojoba and guayule; production, protection technology and quality aspects of these crops; role of biotechnology in value addition of above crops.

Practicals: Biochemical analysis of medicinal, aromatic and underutilized plants for quality traits; management of herbal garden; visit to important pharmaceutical laboratories.



Historical perspectives and need for PGR conservation, taxonomical classification of cultivated plants, Gene pool: primary, secondary and tertiary; Centres of origin and diversity; basic genetic resources and transgenes; principles, strategies and practices of exploration, collection, characterization, evaluation and cataloging of PGR; Plant quarantine and phytosanitary certification,; Germplasm introduction and exchange; principles of in vitro and cryopreservation (biotechnology in PGR); Germplasm conservation- in situ, ex situ, and on-farm; short, medium and long term conservation strategies for conservation of orthodox seed and vegetatively propagated crops; registration of plant genetic resources; PGR data base management, description, national and international mechanism for PGR management, PGR for food and agriculture (PGRFA), PGR access and benefit sharing, IPR, PBR, Farmers rights and privileges, Visit to NBPGR, its outstations, forest and national parks.

PB-509  International Agricultural Research & Research Ethics (1+0)       Sem.I

History of agriculture in brief; global agricultural research system : need, scope, opportunities; role in promoting food security, reducing poverty and protecting the environment.; National Agricultural Research Systems (NARS) and Reg. Agril. Research institutions ; The Consultative Group on International Agril. Research (CGIAR): International Agril. Research Centres (IARC), partnership with NARS, role as a partner in the global agril., research system, strengthening capacities at national and regional levels ; Intellectual property rights ;IPR:  patents and  plant variety protection, trade related IPR, international public good, farmer’s rights and agro biodiversity ; research ethics: research integrity, research safety in laboratories, welfare of animals used in research, computer ethics, Standards and problems in research ethics.



Phylogenetic relationship, genome status, history and distribution of wheat, barley, rice, maize and millets; latest review of literature on genetics of important qualitative and quantitative characters in these crops; breeding methods in use and achievements made in India and abroad; future breeding strategy



Phylogenetic relationship, genome status, history and distribution of cotton, oilseeds, sugarcane, pulses and forages; latest review of literature on genetics of important qualitative and quantitative characters in these crops; breeding methods in use and achievements made in India and abroad; future breeding strategy



Non-allelic interactions; linkage and genotype x environment interactions in relation to heterosis; maternal inheritance; effective factors; triple test cross; diallel crosses in cross-pollinated crops; partial diallel; triallel and quadriallel; principal component analysis and its importance in plant breeding; sequential yield component analysis; recent developments.

Practical: Detection of linkage for quantitative characters, measurement of the sensitivity of additive and dominance components to environment; analysis of triple test cross, diallel cross, partial diallel crosses and triallel crosses; principal component analysis.

PB-604 / BMB 604   Biotechnology for crop improvement (2+1) Sem I (Pre-requisite: PB 504/BMB501)   SEM.I


Recombinant DNA technology, transgenes, method of gene transformations, vector-mediated gene transfer, physical methods of gene transfer, production of transgenic plants in various field crops: cotton, wheat, maize,rice, soybean, oilseeds, sugarcane etc. GMOs related issues (risk and bio safety regulations). Biotechnology applications in male sterility/hybrid breeding, molecular farming. Molecular breeding: morphological, biochemical and DNA-based markers (RFLP, RAPD, AFLP, SSR etc.), mapping populations (F2s, back crosses, RILs , NILs and DH). Molecular mapping and tagging of agronomically important traits. QTLs analysis in crop plants, Marker-assisted selection for qualitative and quantitative traits, Gene pyramiding.

Practical: Transformation using Agrobacterium strains, GUS assay in transformed cells / tissues. DNA isolation, DNA purity and quantification tests, gel electrophoresis of proteins and isozymes, PCR-based DNA markers, gel scoring and data analysis for tagging and phylogenetic relationship, construction of genetic linkage maps using computer software.

PB-591 (1+0), SEM.I&II   SEMINAR

PB 600   Master’s Research

PB 700   Ph.D. Research



Last updated - 28/11/14