Chemical mutagens have long been used to create genetic variability in crop plants for breeding research and genetic studies. In rice, more than 500 varieties have been released through induced mutations. Ethyl methane sulphonate (EMS) is the most commonly used chemical mutagen in plants. EMS normally induces Gas chromatography GC to AT transitions in the genome and thus resulting protein in the mutant plant has different functions than normal. The present study was carried out to investigate the mutagenic effects of different concentrations of EMS on germination and yield parameters of two basmati rice cultivars (Super basmati and Basmati 370). The seeds were subjected to different treatment levels of EMS. The treated and untreated plants were observed under different agronomic parameters. EMS was quite effective in inducing genetic variability in Basmati rice. The results revealed significant difference among all the traits studied. The efficiency of EMS was found to depend upon its concentration and it was higher at lower concentration in both genotypes. The study further revealed that the use of EMS is an effective approach for creating new rice germplasm.
Key words: Rice (Oryza sativa L.), induced mutations, mutation breeding, EMS
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