Agricultural genetics

Agricultural genetics is the applied study of the effects of genetic variation and selection used to propagate valuable heritable trait combinations in crop plants and farm animals. The discipline includes use of genetic markers to guide traditional breeding, and introgression and introduction of traits from other species into farmed organisms.

Latest Research and Reviews

  • Research
    | Open Access

    Azaleas are one of the most diverse ornamental plants and have cultural and economic importance. Here, the authors report a chromosome-scale genome assembly for the primary ancestor of the azalea cultivar Rhododendro simsi and identify transcription factors that may function in flower coloration at different stages.

    • Fu-Sheng Yang
    • , Shuai Nie
    • , Hui Liu
    • , Tian-Le Shi
    • , Xue-Chan Tian
    • , Shan-Shan Zhou
    • , Yu-Tao Bao
    • , Kai-Hua Jia
    • , Jing-Fang Guo
    • , Wei Zhao
    • , Na An
    • , Ren-Gang Zhang
    • , Quan-Zheng Yun
    • , Xin-Zhu Wang
    • , Chanaka Mannapperuma
    • , Ilga Porth
    • , Yousry Aly El-Kassaby
    • , Nathaniel Robert Street
    • , Xiao-Ru Wang
    • , Yves Van de Peer
    •  & Jian-Feng Mao
  • Research
    | Open Access

    The molecular connection between nitrogen utilization efficiency (NUE) and biomass production is unclear. Here, the authors show that differences in NUE and cellulose biogenesis between rice indica and japonica subspecies can be explained by variation at the MYB61 locus, which is regulated by the NUE regulator GRF4.

    • Yihong Gao
    • , Zuopeng Xu
    • , Lanjun Zhang
    • , Shance Li
    • , Shaogan Wang
    • , Hanlei Yang
    • , Xiangling Liu
    • , Dali Zeng
    • , Qiaoquan Liu
    • , Qian Qian
    • , Baocai Zhang
    •  & Yihua Zhou
  • Reviews
    | Open Access

    Biofortification is an effective means to reduce micronutrient malnutrition. Here, the authors review recent advances in biofortification and propose stacking multiple micronutrient traits into high-yielding varieties through the combination of conventional breeding and genetic engineering approaches.

    • Dominique Van Der Straeten
    • , Navreet K. Bhullar
    • , Hans De Steur
    • , Wilhelm Gruissem
    • , Donald MacKenzie
    • , Wolfgang Pfeiffer
    • , Matin Qaim
    • , Inez Slamet-Loedin
    • , Simon Strobbe
    • , Joe Tohme
    • , Kurniawan Rudi Trijatmiko
    • , Hervé Vanderschuren
    • , Marc Van Montagu
    • , Chunyi Zhang
    •  & Howarth Bouis
  • Research
    | Open Access

    This study presents and validates a novel approach to reliably identify structural variations (SVs) in non-model genomes using whole genome sequencing, which was used to detect 15,483 SVs in 492 Atlantic salmon, shedding light on their roles in genome evolution and the genetic architecture of domestication.

    • Alicia C. Bertolotti
    • , Ryan M. Layer
    • , Manu Kumar Gundappa
    • , Michael D. Gallagher
    • , Ege Pehlivanoglu
    • , Torfinn Nome
    • , Diego Robledo
    • , Matthew P. Kent
    • , Line L. Røsæg
    • , Matilde M. Holen
    • , Teshome D. Mulugeta
    • , Thomas J. Ashton
    • , Kjetil Hindar
    • , Harald Sægrov
    • , Bjørn Florø-Larsen
    • , Jaakko Erkinaro
    • , Craig R. Primmer
    • , Louis Bernatchez
    • , Samuel A. M. Martin
    • , Ian A. Johnston
    • , Simen R. Sandve
    • , Sigbjørn Lien
    •  & Daniel J. Macqueen

News and Comment

  • News and Views |

    A negative-strand RNA virus is engineered to express both CRISPR-associated protein 9 (Cas9) and single-guide RNAs, enabling gene editing as the virus infects the plant.

    • Savithramma P. Dinesh-Kumar
    •  & Daniel F. Voytas
    Nature Plants 6, 738-739
  • News and Views |

    Three genomes must cooperate in plants — those in the nucleus, mitochondria and chloroplasts. Biparental inheritance of the nucleus and maternal inheritance of the organelles has made studying these interactions difficult. A new method allows the nucleus to be inherited paternally so the ‘black box’ of interactions can be studied.

    • Alan C. Christensen
    Nature Plants 6, 5-6
  • News and Views |

    The publication of two high-quality rose reference genomes opens new possibilities for a better understanding of the rise of the phenotypic diversity behind domestication.

    • Aureliano Bombarely
    Nature Plants 4, 406-407