Local rice varieties indigenous to the Mekong Delta, Vietnam, for screening of salinity tolerance.

Viet Nam



JIRCAS’ Comprehensive Project on the “Development of new technologies and their practice for sustainable farming systems in the Mekong Delta” has an important component addressing the genetic diversity angle in Mekong Delta agriculture. Due to the introduction of high-yielding rice varieties, traditional varieties with stress tolerance might disappear rapidly. Dr. V. D. Tuan, JIRCAS Research Fellow, worked with JIRCAS staff in the analysis of genetic diversity of traditional varieties in the region.
 A total of 43 microsatellite primers were used for the genetic diversity analysis of 60 traditional rice varieties, five upland rice varieties from the region and 10 other lines as reference. Those 75 lines were grouped into four major groups (Figure 1). All japonica type varieties were clustered into Group I and indica type into Groups II to IV. Traditional varieties are grouped into Group II and IV, expressing a great deal of genetic diversity. Moreover, salinity tolerance was assessed. A total of 14 traditional varieties had shown levels of tolerance similar to or more than that of the standard tolerant varieties such as Pokkali and NipponBare.
 A high level of genetic diversity among traditional rice varieties in the Mekong Delta was confirmed. This indicated that conservation of those traditional varieties is important and further progress in breeding using those rice cultivars are feasible due to high level of variation observed. The discovery of salinity-tolerant rice varieties is highly encouraging. Tolerance was observed in all groups, indicating a wide spread of salinity tolerance and, consequently, a wide genetic base for the trait. Pyramiding genes of salinity tolerance with different genetic background seems possible based on the results.


Japan International Research Center for Agricultural Sciences Biological Resources Division


Technical A

Term of research

FY1999 (FY1998-1999)

Responsible researcher

BAN Tomohiro ( Biological Resources Division )

TUAN Vuong Dinh ( Cuulong Delta Rice Research Institute )

Japanese PDF

1999_02_A3_ja.pdf782.33 KB

Related Research Highlights