Latest Projects

IBOC

Boosting the Value of Canola Seed
The Improving Brassica Oil Content (IBOC) project was a joint Alberta – Saskatchewan project initiated to provide a better understanding of the overall metabolic events in the seed, the relationship between the embryo, endosperm and seed coat and their contributions to the process of oil accumulation. Understanding the mechanisms that govern seed oil accumulation is critical in designing strategies for increasing seed oil content as well as for the production of specialty oils containing value-added fatty acids for health and non-food industrial applications.

Research ResultsResearch Results
As much as 80% of the value of canola seeds is derived from the oil component and recently it has been estimated that a one percent increase in seed oil content would bring an additional $35 Million to the oilseed crushing and processing industry in Canada (Canola Council of Canada). Since meal quality traits such as seed coat thickness and pigmentation are directly linked to oil quantity, there is a tremendous opportunity to link the oil accumulation research to seed coat quality.

The IBOC project provided a better understanding of the overall metabolic events in the seed and the relationship between the different key seed components embryo, endosperm and seed coat and their contributions to the process of oil accumulation. This understanding is playing a fundamental role in the development of crops with increased seed oil content, as well as for the production of improved specialty oils..

Notable OutcomesNotable Outcomes
Generation of 30,000 and 20,000 ESTs associated with Brassica embryo development
Gene expression profiling for Brassica embryogenesis using Arabidopsis and Brassica gene chips
Construction of epitope-tagged TFs and generation of transgenic lines in Arabidopsis

Quick Facts

  • Project Leader(s):
    • Randall Weselake
      (University of Alberta)
    • Faouzi Bekkaoui
      (National Research Council, Plant Biotechnology Institute)
  • Project Manager:

    Disa Brownfield-Walker, University of Alberta
    Laurie Hayes, National Research Council, Plant Biotechnology Institute

  • Project Value:

    $1.7 Million

  • Provincial Funding (SK):

    $1.7 Million

  • Project Status:

    Complete (2007 - 2010)

Current Projects

2022 - Present

Bison Integrated Genomics (BIG)

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2016-2022

CanCOGeN – Canadian COVID-19 Genomics Network

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2021-2024

CPMN – Canadian Prairie Metabolic Network

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2020 - 2022

COV3R – COVID-19 Rapid Regional Response

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2015-2021

CTAG2 – Canadian Triticum Applied Genomics

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2019 to 2023

4DWheat – Diversity, Discovery, Design and Delivery

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2016-2021

EcoToxChip – A toxicogenomics tool for chemical prioritization and environmental management

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2019 - 2023

EVOLVES – Enhancing the Value of Lentil Variation for Ecosystem Survival

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2019 - 2022

FLOWTER – Floating Wetland Treatments to Enhance Remediation

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2016-2022

GENICE II

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2019 - 2023

Genomic ASSETS (Antimicrobial Stewardship Systems from Evidence-based Treatment Strategies) for Livestock

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2016-2022

GENICE: Microbial Genomics for Oil Spill Preparedness in Canada’s Arctic Marine Environment

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2018 - 2021

Improving on-seed survival and performance of legume inoculants using genome shuffling

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