Oryza genome diversity: discovery, management and utilisation


Rod A Wing
Journal: Sustaining Global Food Security: The Nexus of Science and Policy
Cultivated rice (Oryza sativa) and its wild relatives (Oryza spp.) are the product of~ 15 million years of evolution. The accumulated genetic diversity has yet to be fully exploited for crop improvement. As the world’s population increases from~ 7.6 billion to 10 billion by 2050 (United Nations 2017), society seeks the means to provide adequate, nutritious and affordable food while maintaining our environment and natural resources. Plant biologists and rice improvement specialists are teaming up to describe and harness rice’s genetic diversity to breed the next generation of rice varieties that are higher yielding and more nutritious, while simultaneously having less of an environmental impact (ie rice that requires less water, fertiliser, pesticides, can grow on marginal lands under higher temperatures, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, such genetic as diversity methane, for CH rice.

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