Research programs

The research programs of Pro-Maïs are long term programs concerning :

  • characterization and preservation of genetic resources
  • history of maize biodiversity in the world
  • development of new breeding methods
  • genetics of maize and its prgenitor teosinte
  • domestication and adaptation to Europe
  • digestibility of fodder maize
  • drought tolerance
  • etc.

 These programs are co-financed by the partner breeders on the basis of volunteering.

They are realized in collaboration with INRA stations and laboratories : Montpellier, Le Moulon (UMR de génétique végétale), St Martin de Hinx, Lusignan, IJPB Versailles, Estrée Mons.

Action « Corn landraces » Permanent and compulsory Management of National Collection resources preservation.
GELI Permanent and compulsory Field testing of new inbreds from INRA stations
Populations sources (PPS) then PPS2 and PPS2C 1983–1996? 1236 entries – 32 pools. Characterization and grouping based on combining ability.
Flints diversity 1 1997-1999 Genetic diversity of European and American landraces. 220 genotyped. C. Rebourg thesis.
RESGEN88 1997-2001 Combining a database of 2900 European landraces and a core collection of 100 representative landraces, characterized by their drought and European corn borer tolerance as well as fodder and grain quality.
Flints diversity 2 2000-2002 Genetic relationship between European and Américan maize – CIMMYT collaboration -thesis P. Dubreuil. Historical research by M. Chastanet.
Flints diversity 3 2003-2005 Complements previous works – 300 landraces – allelic sequencing of 10 relevant genes: earliness at flowering, biochemical features of the grain etc. Historical research continuation.
Genotype by Environment interaction 2001-2006 Network of collaborative trials and statistical analysis– selection for stability of yield of early maize in Europe.
Elite inbreds x landraces = « Piemont Pyrénéen » 2003-2007 Combination of elite inbreds from partners with Pyrenean landraces to create very early and digestible inbreds.

Nitrogen Use Efficiency

2002-2007 Survey of 26 hybrids to study their genetic variability for nitrogen use efficiency.
DYNAG - cell wall digestibility 2005-2008 Genetics of cell wall digestibility
Digestibility Toulouse ASSEDISSO 2006-2009 Expression of cell wall genes associated with digestibility

Zea wall I

Zea wall II



Research of candidate genes associated with QTLs of lignification.

Multiparental MAS 2005-2009 Marker assisted selection to identify QTLs in related families. (G.Blanc thesis)
MAS MCR 2010-2014 Multiparental Connected Reciprocal tool to the prediction of hybrid value by genomic selection.
Zea diversity 2008-2013

Worldwide maize diversity.
Identification of relevant alleles through genetic association.
Genetic markers associated with domestication
Genetic marker creation for adaptation and grain composition.
Development of indicators and sources of drought tolerance.

Valuation of genetic resources 2015 - 2020

Utilization of genetic resources developed in the project « Zea Diversity » to improve elite inbreds for breeders.

MAS MCR 2 2015 - 2019

Comparison of a genomic breeding scheme for fodder maize using testers or a factorial plan.

DECLIC  2018 -2022 New sources for improvement of cell wall digestibility by using cytological approaches and quantification of ferulic and coumaric acids.