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An important challenge in vegetable breeding from resistance to quality is the exploration of excellent gene resources from wild relatives. The strategies are distant hybridization and cucumber-sour cucumber introgression lines. Our goals are to provide a fundamental understanding of distant hybridization mechanisms and to map the excellent gene resources using molecular design principles.

Our group created the first valid interspecific cross ever made with cucumber. It represents extremely significant research on the systematics and phylogeny of Cucumis species and is of fundamental importance to cucumber and melon breeding, genetics, and physiology. About one third of our group focuses on cytological study of the new species (Cucumis ×hytivus Chen & Kirkbride (2n = 4x = 38)), and the next third focuses on the mechanisms of the genome variation on early genomic changes of a synthetic allotetraploid in Cucumis. The last third focuses on identifying resistance and good quality genes for application.

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