Natural variation of photosynthetic traits for enhanced yield in rice

Natural variation in photosynthetic traits can be exploited for new targets for breeding or genetic engineering of crops. In an effort to identify traits which can lead to enhanced biomass production and therefore yield potential in rice, Qu et al. conducted a comprehensive survey of 14 photosynthetic parameters and four morphological traits of a global rice population under high- and low light conditions. The results revealed that the photosynthetic rate under low light highly correlates with biomass accumulation in rice. Notably, this important physiological trait is highly heritable, thus ready for genetic manipulation in contemporary rice breeding programs for better biomass production and yield potential. (Summary by  Quang Vong Le) Plant Physiol.  10.1104/pp.17.00332