Promising eco-physiological traits for genetic improvement of cereal yields in Mediterranean environments.

Book Title: NA
Year Published: 2005
Month Published: NA
Author: Slafer, G. A. ; Araus, J. L. ; Royo, C. ; García delMoral, L. F.
Book Group Author: NA

Breeding for improved productivity has been tremendously successful in the last half-century, but needs to be even more efficient in the future. Hope based on contributions from molecular biology for improved yield potential seems to depend upon an improved knowledge of yield physiology. This knowledge may assist breeding either directly, recommending selection criteria, or indirectly identifying simpler traits that could be reliably mapped and selected for through marker-assisted selection. Physiological traits associated with improved performance under water-limited conditions, include phenology (that allows the crop to escape stresses) and those associated with improved water use, water use efficiency and partitioning. Undoubtedly, earliness has been the predominant trait improved for under Mediterranean conditions, and may not be a prospective trait for future breeding. Different traits that may confer the ability to the crop for capturing more water, such as deeper root systems or osmotic adjustment, may be unworkable in terms of their direct use in selection and surrogates would be needed. For instance, canopy temperature depression and discrimination against 13C may be used to assess improved ability to capture water (in these cases yield is positively related to discrimination against 13C in grains). Early vigour, which allows faster ground coverage, also increases the amount of water actually transpired by the canopy by reducing direct evaporation and presents substantial intraspecific variation, and selection for this trait may be successfully carried out either directly or through the use of vegetation indexes. Improved water use efficiency based on transpiration efficiency is largely restricted to conditions where additional water is not available. A constitutively low stomatal conductance or a high stomatal sensitivity may optimize the transpiration efficiency. In this context, discrimination against 13C is also a simple and reliable measure of water use efficiency, and in cases in which no major differences in capturing water is possible discrimination against 13C correlates negatively with yield. Substantial further improvements in partitioning may be limited in most cereals.

Pages: 61 - 70
URL: http:////,ip,url,cpid&custid=s4640792&db=lah&AN=20053026522&site=ehost-live
Volume: 146
Number: 1
Journal: Annals of Applied Biology
Journal ISO: NA
Organization: NA
Publisher: NA
ISSN: 0003-4746

cereals, crop yield, dry matter distribution, geneticimprovement, leaf conductance, phenology, plant water relations,selection criteria, stomata, transpiration, vigour, water use, water useefficiency, yield components, biomass distribution, vigor, Field Crops(FF005) (New March 2000), Plant Breeding and Genetics (FF020), PlantPhysiology and Biochemistry (FF060), Plant Water Relations (FF062),Plant Production (FF100)

Source: EBSCO
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