A guide to barley mutants

Mats Hansson (Lead / Corresponding author), Helmy M. Youssef, Shakhira Zakhrabekova, David Stuart, Jan T. Svensson, Christoph Dockter, Nils Stein, Robbie Waugh, Udda Lundqvist, Jerome Franckowiak

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BACKGROUND: Mutants have had a fundamental impact upon scientific and applied genetics. They have paved the way for the molecular and genomic era, and most of today's crop plants are derived from breeding programs involving mutagenic treatments.

RESULTS: Barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) is one of the most widely grown cereals in the world and has a long history as a crop plant. Barley breeding started more than 100 years ago and large breeding programs have collected and generated a wide range of natural and induced mutants, which often were deposited in genebanks around the world. In recent years, an increased interest in genetic diversity has brought many historic mutants into focus because the collections are regarded as valuable resources for understanding the genetic control of barley biology and barley breeding. The increased interest has been fueled also by recent advances in genomic research, which provided new tools and possibilities to analyze and reveal the genetic diversity of mutant collections.

CONCLUSION: Since detailed knowledge about phenotypic characters of the mutants is the key to success of genetic and genomic studies, we here provide a comprehensive description of mostly morphological barley mutants. The review is closely linked to the International Database for Barley Genes and Barley Genetic Stocks ( bgs.nordgen.org ) where further details and additional images of each mutant described in this review can be found.

Original languageEnglish
Article number11
Number of pages55
Publication statusPublished - 8 Mar 2024


  • Hordeum/genetics
  • Plant Breeding
  • Mutagenesis
  • Genomics
  • Barley
  • Induced mutants
  • Hordeum vulgare
  • Triticeae
  • Cereal
  • Genebank
  • Mutation
  • Biodiversity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics


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