Review: Unlocking the potential of orphan legumes ($)

orphanlegumesOrphan legumes, which include cowpea (Vigna unguiculata), Bambara groundnut (V. subterranea), grass pea (Lathyrus sativus) and marama bean (Tylosema esculentum), are important food sources for many farmers, but have largely been ignored by breeders and industry. Cullis and Kunert argue that some of these species can provide traits such as drought tolerance to benefit major crop breeding programs, and also that some compounds of pharmaceutical value can be found in orphan legumes. Their review focuses on marama bean and grass pea, and provides insights into efforts to apply molecular breeding and other approaches to orphan crops  to unlock their potential. J. Exp. Bot. 10.1093/jxb/erw437