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ARS Home » Midwest Area » Ames, Iowa » Corn Insects and Crop Genetics Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #322787

Research Project: Disease Resistance Signaling in Cereal Crops

Location: Corn Insects and Crop Genetics Research

Title: Advances in metabolomic applications in plant genetics and breeding

Author
item Yandeau-nelson, Marna
item Lauter, Nicholas
item Zabotina, Olga

Submitted to: CAB Reviews: Perspectives in Agriculture, Veterinary Science, Nutrition and Natural Resources
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 11/4/2015
Publication Date: 2/10/2016
Citation: Yandeau-Nelson, M.D., Lauter, N.C., Zabotina, O. 2016. Advances in metabolomic applications in plant genetics and breeding. CAB Reviews: Perspectives in Agriculture, Veterinary Science, Nutrition and Natural Resources. 10(040):1-15. doi: 10.1079/PAVSNNR201510040.

Interpretive Summary: This review is based on a thorough examination of current plant metabolomics literature as it relates to the disciplines of breeding and genetics. Metabolomics is a systems biology discipline wherein abundances of endogenous metabolites from biological samples are identified and quantitatively measured across a large range of metabolites and/or a large number of samples. Since all developmental, physiological and response to the environment phenotypes have at least one metabolic component phenotype, metabolomics offers the opportunity to mechanistically dissect how metabolic processes participate in determining these complex phenotypes. Plants produce an amazingly diverse array of primary and specialized metabolites (>200,000 kingdom-wide), many of which are integral for our food, feed, fiber and fuel industries. Thus, applications of metabolomics in plant genetics and breeding efforts offer efficient and effective solutions to challenges in our agricultural systems. This review briefly describes new advances in the metabolomic platforms and analysis methods that have been developed for both targeted and non-targeted metabolite profiling in plants. Key terms used in Pubmed and Google Scholar search engines include combinations of metabolomics, applied breeding, biofortification, nutraceuticals, nutragenomics, transgenics, metabolic quantitative trait locus (mQTL) mapping, genome-wide association studies (GWAS). Although the work from more than 150 publications is cited herein, space limitations limit exhaustive reporting of studies. As such, this review focuses on highlighting studies that are recent, novel, or foundational to this exciting and emerging discipline.

Technical Abstract: Metabolomics is a systems biology discipline wherein abundances of endogenous metabolites from biological samples are identified and quantitatively measured across a large range of metabolites and/or a large number of samples. Since all developmental, physiological and response to the environment phenotypes have at least one metabolic component phenotype, metabolomics offers the opportunity to mechanistically dissect how metabolic processes participate in determining these complex phenotypes. Plants produce an amazingly diverse array of primary and specialized metabolites (>200,000 kingdom-wide), many of which are integral for our food, feed, fiber and fuel industries. Thus, applications of metabolomics in plant genetics and breeding efforts offer efficient and effective solutions to challenges in our agricultural systems. This review briefly describes new advances in the metabolomic platforms and analysis methods that have been developed for both targeted and non-targeted metabolite profiling in plants. Special sections describing the application of these technologies are then provided for several relevant topics, including advances in plant quantitative genetics research, improved prediction of hybrid crop performance, mitigation of losses due to environmental stress, development of metabolic biomarkers for economically important traits, establishment of substantial equivalence between transgenic and conventional germplasm, and biofortification for nutritional enhancement of our food supply. Future applications of metabolomics, particularly as a component discipline of phenomics, are also discussed.