Join us on:


 ABC  WACC  Orphan Legumes  Molecular Labs


The Trust funds projects in Africa and India that make use of modern molecular methods for the improvement of legume crops. There are two consortia in Africa that are receiving support from the Kirkhouse Trust. They are the West African Cowpea Consortium (WACC) and the African Bean Consortium (ABC). The Trust also funds other individual projects in India that are working towards the improvement of orphan legume crops.

The consortia receive hands-on support from the Trust through annual meetings, training and student support. The Trust also funded the sequencing of the cowpea and common bean genomes and the creation of genomic databases for marker discovery. Each consortium has an academic consultant appointed to provide advice on the scientific research conducted.

Geographical Distribution

Click here to view a larger map.

The table below lists all the projects pinned on the map above. Please click on any of the pins on the above map, or on the links below to find out more about an individual project.

Project Consortia Institution / Country Project
African Bean Consortium (ABC) SUA, Tanzania "Use of marker assisted selection (MAS) to improve selection efficiency in breeding for resistance to major bean diseases of common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) in Tanzania".
NACCRI, Uganda "Application of gamete selection and molecular MAS in common bean varieties with improved multiple resistance to major diseases in Uganda".
SARI, Ethiopia "Marker assisted selection (MAS) to deploy disease resistance in common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) breeding lines and varieties for Ethiopia".
RAB, Rwanda "Development of common bean lines with multiple disease resistance in Rwanda using marker assisted selection".
West African Cowpea Consortium (WACC) ISRA, Senegal "Strengthening National Capacity for the Development of DNA Markers and the Application of Marker-Assisted Selection (MAS) in Cowpea Breeding for Senegal".
IER, Mali "Development of cowpea varieties resistant to Striga and adapted to the Sahelian zone".
INERA, Burkina Faso "West African Co-ordinated Marker Assisted Selection Research and training Project for Cowpea".
SARI, Ghana "Deployment of the cowpea aphid resistance and Striga resistance gene for cowpea improvement in Ghana".
CRASS / ITRA, Togo "Sifting of the accessions of cowpea for resistance to Striga in Togo / Assessment of cowpea varieties resistant to Striga gesnerioides using farmer participatory research in Togo".
UAM, Nigeria "Genetic Improvement of cowpea for Striga resistance using molecular tools in Nigeria".
IRAD, Cameroon "West African Co-ordinated Marker Assisted Selection Research and Training Project for Cowpea".
Orphan Legumes UASB, India "Genetic enhancement of Dolichos bean (Lablab purpureus) through integration of conventional breeding and molecular approaches and farmers participatory plant breeding".
AAU, India "Establishment of genetic transformation system for pigeonpea (Cajanus cajan) for the deployment of gene technology including insect protection".
UNAM, Namibia "Domestication of Marama bean: Agronomy and molecular genetic characterisation for its improvement".
ICRISAT, India "Benchmarking traits controlling the plant water budget in orphan legumes".
Molecular labs CRIG, Ghana Mobile lab.
UZ, Zimbabwe Teaching lab.