Volume 22



pages 1-4



The Pisum Genetics Association (PGA) is a non-profit, unincorporated organization established to foster genetic study of the pea, to facilitate the exchange of information and to ensure preservation of valuable genetic stocks. The Pisum Newsletter (PNL) is the principal means of meeting these aims. Published annually, the PNL contains reports of research findings and other information relating to genetic variation in Pisum. The PGA currently has 172 members from 28 countries.


Membership of the PGA is open to all interested persons and organizations. Dues are $10 (U.S. currency) or $13 (Australian currency) per annum and are used to help defray the costs of publishing the PNL. Members are encouraged to pay dues for two or more years to simplify bookkeeping and to reduce losses through bank charges. Please make prime banker's cheques or international money orders payable to Pisum Genetics Association and send to Dr I.C. Murfet, Department of Plant Science, University of Tasmania, Hobart, Tas. 7001, Australia. The PNL will be sent upon receipt of dues.


The Editor, Dr I.C. Murfet, may be contacted at the above address or by phone (002) 202605, telex AA 58150 or fax (002) 202986.


Please submit manuscripts double-spaced. Figures should be ready to print and of good quality. Tables should be set out in accord with established format. References should be listed in alphabetical then chronological order and full details supplied for papers in monographs, e.g., give details of editors, publisher and city, page numbers and list all authors; Smith e_t al. is not sufficient. Research reports should be organised concisely in the format of a short introduction outlining the background to and aim of the study, a materials and methods section with essential details and references to techniques, a results section and a discussion section interpreting the results and integrating findings with those of other workers. Section headings are not obligatory. Conclusions should be justified, where applicable, by appropriate statistical analysis. Length should generally be kept within the range of 1-4 PNL pages but longer papers will be considered on their merits. Research reports and reviews are subjected to peer review and revision if necessary. Review articles are obtained by invitation. Papers will not be rejected because the English is not fluent. However, the intended meaning must be clear, the scientific content sound and appropriate, the conclusions justified and the organisation logical.

Gene symbols

Dr Stig Blixt has stood down from the position of Coordinator of Gene Symbols after 21 years of Stirling service. Stig has recently accepted appointment as Director of the Nordic Gene Bank. Mr Mike Ambrose (John Innes Institute, Norwich NR4 7UH, UK; phone (0603) 52571, telex 975122, fax (0603) 56844) has been elected to replace Stig. He will take over from the start of 1991. If you are proposing a new gene symbol please check with Mike that the symbol is free and appropriate.


PGA rules for genetic symbols are given in PNL 9 Supplement: 61-64 (1977). In due course, please send type lines for new genes to Stig Blixt (Nordic Gene Bank, S23058 Alnarp, Sweden) and reprints to Mike.


Your attention is drawn to the article on page 99 entitled "pGene. A Pisum gene database" by Peter Winfield. Peter has been elected as Coordinator for the "Pisum Gene Handbook". This project was initiated in 1987 but languished somewhat due to events beyond our control. Updating the Pisum gene database is seen as a first step toward bringing the Handbook to fruition and Peter will be contacting various people during the updating process. Your cooperation in this project will be most appreciated. Peter, Mike and Niall Green have been functioning as a working party on the gene list, symbols and Pisum Gene Handbook. They are seeking to complete the genelist update by the end of 1992 and have targetted 1994 for completion of a draft of the Handbook which will be illustrated with photographs where applicable.


Dr Norman F. Weeden (Dept. of Hort. Sci., NYSAES, Geneva NY 14456, USA; phone (315) 787 2245, fax (315) 787 2397, telex 671 7017) has been elected Coordinator of Linkage Maps. He would be pleased to receive new linkage results as they become available. The past decade has seen a tremendous increase in our knowledge of the pea gene map as a result of studies using isozyme markers. Normal Weeden, ably supported by Bogdan Wolko, has been the chief architect of that work. Isozymic markers give clear segregations and they have enabled the map to be extended into regions which are deficient in morphological markers. The results also indicate significant changes to the long standing map of Lamprecht, e.g. the wa-chi-5 section of chromosome 2 has been moved to chromosome 7 and the r-tl-bt region of the old chromosome 7 has been moved to chromosome 5. The latter move is also supported by results of cytogenetic work and analyses using morphological markers (see reports on pages 38 and 62). We hope to include regular updates of the linkage map in future issues.


All the Marx pea material is now held at the USDA-ARS Plant Genetic Resources Unit, NYSAES, Geneva, NY in the care of Dr Jim McFerson. A catalogue of some 500-600 key accessions is being prepared and the material increased. The intention is to release the Marx Catalogue in hard copy or 3V2 disc (PC or Mac) about August, 1991 when seed stocks of all accessions have been increased. Small samples of 10-20 seeds will be supplied in response to specific requests, i.e. the applicant should specify the accessions required.


I was most pleased to have the opportunity to meet so many of our members during my trip in May-July which included visits to Bulgaria, Sweden, France, Spain, UK, Poland and the USA. I would have travelled further had time and circumstance permitted. The trip substantially delayed publication of PNL 22 but this consequence was far outweighed by the experience of meeting such a diversity of pea workers. Given my background in pure science it was important for me to see


something of the applied side of pea work and in the review of flowering genes (page 78) I have sought to address some of the issues raised during my discussions with plant breeders.



On my visit to Sweden I sadly missed two familiar faces, those of Professor Robert Lamm and Dr Ebbe Kjellqvist. Robert Lamm was born in Roslags Nasby on September 16, 1905 and he died at Lund April 24, 1989. He was featured on the cover of PNL 9 (1977) and I can thoroughly endorse the comments which Dr Marx made at that time in the cover note. Robert was one of nature's gentlemen. Always extremely helpful and a pleasure to visit with, he holds for me a special place since he supplied in the '50s the first 8 lines in the Hobart pea collection and my Ph.D. drew heavily on those lines. He took B. Agron. in 1928, M.Sc. in 1936 and Ph.D. in 1944 with a dissertation on Solanum. His early work was with the Swedish Seed Association, Svalbv (1931-33) and he spent short periods (1937 and 1947-49) at the Genetics Department at Lund. However, most of the years from 1938 to his retirement in 1971 were spent at Alnarp where he became Professor of Vegetable Cultivation in 1963. He devoted much time and effort while at Alnarp to develop the Swedish system for research and trials of vegetables from a very primitive status to a nationwide organisation. His research on pea spanned an interval of more than 50 years and he contributed to the PNL as recently as 1987. After his retirement in 1971 he was able to devote all his time to his consuming interest in pea cytology with enthusiastic support from Weibullsholm and the Genetics Department at Lund. When found dead in the marketplace at Lund he had in his pocket seeds of his latest pea lines, labelled "for Blixt".

Ebbe Kjellqvist


Dr Ebbe Kjellqvist died on December 23, 1989, after a long struggle with cancer, aged 57 years. He was the founding director of the Nordic Gene Bank, a post which he held from 1979 until his death. He early recognised the importance of the conservation of genetic resources. In 1965 he took on an FAO mission to establish a cytotaxonomic laboratory in Turkey and was instrumental in establishing the Turkish Genebank in 1971. The acceptance by the Nordic Gene Bank of the important and extensive Weibullsholm collection represents a major contribution to the conservation of Pisum germplasm.


Dr S.J. Wellensiek, Emeritus Professor at the Landbouw Hogeschool of Wageningen, The Netherlands, died on March 29, 1990, at the age of 91. Dr Wellensiek was a life member of the PGA and his likeness appears on the cover of Volume 7 (1975). His monograph in 1925 represents a landmark in pea genetics. He pioneered the use of a joint physiological-genetical approach to the study of plant developmental processes and some of the material which he obtained by mutation breeding is still proving a valuable resource in current research, e.g. in our work at Hobart. When I visited with him in 1974 he explained with great sorrow that this was the first time in 50 years he did not have any peas growing. He also worked extensively with other plants, in particular Silene, and with his great


interest in flowering was instrumental in the founding of the Flowering Newsletter in 1986.


We say farewell and thanks for a job well done to two people from Geneva NY who have given many years of service to the PGA. Fran Van Kirk played a major role in the production of the PNL and the administration of PGA affairs from the start in 1969 until she closed our bank account in Geneva in December 1989 and forwarded the funds to Hobart. Gerry Marx' songs of praise for Fran still ring loud in my ears and having worked with Fran I can assure you that praise was well earned. Secondly, I wish to record our gratitude to Charlotte Pratt of Geneva who indexed the PNL over a period of many years concluding with Volume 21. We were fortunate indeed to have someone with her talent and ability prepared to volunteer so many hours of onerous service. Thanks Charlotte. We acknowledge the help of Sue Dwyer of the Germplasm Laboratory, NYSAES, Geneva who has now taken over the role of caring for and forwarding back issues of the PNL. I am particularly grateful to our typiste, Beverley Thomson, who has made the long task of preparing PNL 22 easier by her speed and accuracy and by her preparedness to work with me to get the presentation right. Thanks are also due to the Committee members, general members and referees who have assisted in various ways with the production of PNL 22 and the running of the PGA, and, in particular, to Stig Blixt for his major contribution over the years as Symbols Coordinator.


Financial report for the period April 1 - December 8 1989. All sums are in US dollars. PNL 21 was produced and posted at Geneva, NY.



Balance brought forward from March 30 1989




Dues paid






Postage & fax








Bank charges


Balance December 8 1989




I.C. Murfet for the Coordinating Committee:

S. Blixt

F. Muehlbauer

B. Snoad

E. Gritton

I. Murfet

W.K. Swiecicki

C. Hedley

J. Reid

N. Weeden

L. Monti

B. Sharma