Fast fit palms

Generating molecular and biotechnological tools for date palm provides the first step toward understanding and improving the mechanisms of adaptation to desert conditions. Establishing palms from a homogenous tissue culture to maintain pure lines will allow the preservation and improvement of local cultivars. This project builds multiple tools that will enable the establishment of robust date palm breeding programs in the KSA. This includes 1) stable transformation protocol, 2) reducing the generation time, 3) obtaining and analyzing high-quality genomic information, and 4) developing methods for rapid sex determination. These are the first steps toward establishing date palm breeding in the KSA, to develop fast, fit palms. Furthermore, knowledge from date palm can be transferred to other crops, which will also contribute to improving desert agriculture.