Station of apple breeding for disease resistance

Group head: 
Radek Černý
1) Strizovice, 463 45 Pencin u Liberce 2) Rozvojova 263, 165 02 Praha 6
cernyatueb [dot] cas [dot] cz
+420 225 106 492
Station Address: 
Station of apple breeding
for disease resistance,
463 45 Pěnčín u Liberce
Tel.: +420 485 177 430
Fax.: +420 485 177 430
Head of the Střížovice Station:
Ing. Radek Černý
Tel.: +420 225 106 492

Research objectives of the Station

The research activity of the Station is focused on research of resistance against diseases in apples and on breeding of scab resistant and powdery mildew tolerant apple varieties. Breeding for resistance to these diseases has a high priority throughout the world in view of minimizing the use of chemicals in fruit production. The most frequent problems of commercialization of resistant varieties are unsatisfactory organoleptic fruit qualities. In our program started in 1966 we use hybrids with Vf resistance against scab from Malus floribunda and cultivars with polygenic tolerance against scab and mildew.

A series of varieties with a broad spectrum of ripening time, fruit qualities and growing properties has been released from this program. The varieties are protected by Plant Variety Rights in Czech Republic, Switzerland, Ukraine and in the European Union and by United States patent.

Our ongoing research is focused on further improvement of commercial qualities of resistant varieties and on a combination of Vf resistance with tolerances against scab encoded polygenically in order to render scab resistance more durable. In relation to these objectives genetic sources homozygous in the gene Vf are created using molecular markers for their identification and attemps are made to find molecular markers for other types of scab resistance.

Propagation of the new varieties requires a licence agreement and payment of royalties. The varieties are grown for commercial fruit production in countries of the European union and  in the USA mainly as organic apple production. The mostly grown is at the present time the variety Topaz and its mutation Red Topaz.  The yellow coloured varieties Opal®, Orion, Luna and Sirius are introduced into the market in Europa and maditerranean countries under the Golden Sunshine Line ® (GSL) marketing concept of the German society webfruit GmbH. In North America they are licensed to Varieties International LLC Dundee, OR97115.

OPAL® is a trademark protected in a number of countries for the variety UEB 32642. Plant protection of the variety in USA and EU is extended on several further countries. For propagation of the variety in Europe and the Mediterranean countries under an exclusive liccence, the company s.r.o. was founded by six leading European nurseries. For the other countries except USA an exclusive propagation licence was granted to Varieties International LLC and Webfruit GmbH.   

The Station is also involved in breeding of disease resistant varieties with compact columnar growth habit using varieties derived from the "Wijcik" mutant of McIntosh. One variety, Sonet, is protected in Czech Republic and several varieties were applied for Community Plant Variety Rights in the European Union (Cactus, Goldlane, Moonlight, Redlane, Redspring, Rhapsodie, Rondo, Sonate, Sunlight). These varieties are commercialized in the European Union mainly for home gardens.

The inventors of the varieties are employees of the Institute and the latter is the owner of the varieties.


Selected varieties to which plant protection in the European union or in the USA has been granted since the year 2005

Keywords: Apple, resistance against diseases, scab, mildew, breeding of resistant varieties, compact columnar forms

Group of plant-pathogen inetractions

In the field of applied research, the laboratory is involved in molecular biology of resistance against apple scab caused by the fungus Venturia inaequalis.

(Under Construction)


head of the laboratory
graduated technical assistant


scientific assistant

graduated technical assistant


Research projects: 
Number of publications: 12