Group Solanaceae Breeding I
The Group of Solanaceae Breeding I mostly works in the development of tools and plant material, as well as in the conservation and utilization of genetic resources of several crops of the Solanaceae family. In particular, the most important works involve the common eggplant (Solanum melongena), but also other less known crops like scarlet eggplant (S. aethiopicum), gboma eggplant (S. macrocarpon), pepino (S. muricatum), or tree tomato (S. betaceum).
We use conventional breeding methodologies, as well as molecular tools for the characterization, selection, enhancement and utilization of genetic resources, in particular local varieties and wild species.
Works made also involve the development of molecular tools, as new markers, genetic maps, or introgression lines for the improvement and study of the evolution and domestication of these crops. One of the main lines of research deals with the genetic improvement of fruit quality, in particular concerning increasing the amounts of bioactive compounds like vitamins or phenolics.