Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/27/2018
Publication Date: 1/28/2019
Citation: Harris-Shultz, K.R., Hayes, C.M., Knoll, J.E. 2019. Mapping QTL and identification of genes associated with drought resistance in sorghum. Springer Protocols, Methods Molecular Biology. Vol. 1931, Zuo-Yu Zhao and Jeff Dahlberg (Eds): Sorghum, p. 11-40. Humana Press, New York, NY.
Interpretive Summary: Drought is a major cause of global crop loss. The use of crops with drought resistance is a long-term solution for stabilizing crop productivity. Sorghum is well adapted to hot and dry environments and increasing drought resistance further in new sorghum hybrids with limited impact on yield is a continual objective for sorghum breeders. In this book chapter, we review drought resistance, the cross talk between abiotic and biotic stress responses, and the molecular mechanisms of drought responses in sorghum. We further describe the loci, QTL, or genes that have been identified for the traits involved in drought avoidance and drought tolerance in sorghum.
Technical Abstract: Water limits global agricultural production and the global increasing aridity, growing human population, and the depletion of aquifers will only increase its scarcity for agriculture. Water is essential for plant growth and in areas that are prone to drought, the use of drought resistant crops is a long-term solution for growing more food for more people with less water. Sorghum is well adapted to hot and dry environments and has been used as a dietary staple for millions of people. Increasing the drought resistance further in new sorghum hybrids with no impact on yield is a continual objective for sorghum breeders. In this review, we describe the loci, QTL, or genes that have been identified for traits involved in drought avoidance (water-use efficiency, cuticular wax synthesis, trichome development and morphology, root system architecture) and drought tolerance (compatible solutes, pre and post flowering drought tolerance). Many of these identified genes and QTL regions have not been tested in hybrids and the effect of these genes, or their interactions, on yield must be understood in normal and drought stressed conditions to understand the strength and weaknesses of their utility.