Rice production faces the challenge to be enhanced by 50% by year 2030 to meet the growth of the population in rice-eating countries. Whereas yield of cereal crops tend to reach plateaus and a yield is likely to be deeply affected by climate instability and resource scarcity in the coming decades, building rice cultivars harboring root systems that can maintain performance by capturing water and nutrient resources unevenly distributed is a major breeding target. Taking advantage of gathering a community of rice root biologists in a Global Rice Science Partnership workshop held in Montpellier, France, we present here the recent progresses accomplished in this area and focal points where an international network of laboratories should direct their efforts.
Bibliographical noteThe authors thank the Global Rice Science Partnership and Agropolis Fondation (Special grant n° 1400–009 and Rhizopolis grant n° 1001–005) benefiting from a national ANR Investissement d’Avenir” grant ANR-10-LABX-001-01) for supporting the workshop. They acknowledge the assistance of Nathalie Pivot, Cirad and Véronique Rafin, INRA in workshop organization. The root research at Cirad and University of Aberdeen is supported by the European Grant (FP7/2007-2013) under grant agreement n° 289300.27 EURoot “Enhancing resource Uptake from ROOTs under stress in cereal crops”. Research at IRRI is supported by the Generation Challenge Program and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. J.X. is supported by the AcRF Tier 2 grant (MOE2009-T2-1-060) from the Ministry of Education of Singapore and National Research Foundation Singapore under its Competitive Research Programme (CRP Award No. NRF2010 NRF-CRP002-018). Doan Trung Luu is supported by the EU Marie Curie International Outgoing Fellowship 'ORYZAQUA – Cell Biology of Rice Aquaporins' (PIOF-GA-2011-300150). AP acknowledges the Generation Challenge Programme funded project “Targeting drought avoidance root traits to enhance rice productivity under water limited environments”. Financial support for A.G. Diedhiou was provided by the Université Cheikh Anta Diop (UCAD, VE12/13, CpVIII-Ar4 ) and GRISP. *This paper is dedicated to the late memory of Pr Ping Wu who passed away in a tragic car accident on June 12th, 2014.
- Genetic and molecular controls