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Prescreening in large populations as a tool for identifying elevated CO2-responsive genotypes in plants
journal contributionposted on 05.09.2019, 00:00 by H Shimono, G Farquhar, M Brookhouse, FA Busch, A O'Grady, Michael Tausz, EA Pinkard
Elevated atmospheric CO2 concentration (e[CO2]) can stimulate the photosynthesis and productivity of C3 species including food and forest crops. Intraspecific variation in responsiveness to e[CO2] can be exploited to increase productivity under e[CO2]. However, active selection of genotypes to increase productivity under e[CO2] is rarely performed across a wide range of germplasm, because of constraints of space and the cost of CO2 fumigation facilities. If we are to capitalise on recent advances in whole genome sequencing, approaches are required to help overcome these issues of space and cost. Here, we discuss the advantage of applying prescreening as a tool in large genome-e[CO2] experiments, where a surrogate for e[CO2] was used to select cultivars for more detailed analysis under e[CO2] conditions. We discuss why phenotypic prescreening in population-wide screening for e[CO2] responsiveness is necessary, what approaches could be used for prescreening for e[CO2] responsiveness, and how the data can be used to improve genetic selection of high-performing cultivars. We do this within the framework of understanding the strengths and limitations of genotype-phenotype mapping. © CSIRO 2019.