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ARS Home » Midwest Area » Urbana, Illinois » Global Change and Photosynthesis Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #390090

Research Project: Optimizing Photosynthesis for Global Change and Improved Yield

Location: Global Change and Photosynthesis Research

Title: Advances in field-based high-throughput photosynthetic phenotyping

item PENG, FU - University Of Illinois
item Montes, Christopher
item Siebers, Matthew
item GOMEZ-CASANOVAS, NURIA - University Of Illinois
item McGrath, Justin
item Ainsworth, Elizabeth - Lisa
item Bernacchi, Carl

Submitted to: Journal of Experimental Botany
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/23/2022
Publication Date: 5/23/2022
Citation: Peng, F., Montes, C.M., Siebers, M.H., Gomez-Casanovas, N., McGrath, J.M., Ainsworth, E.A., Bernacchi, C.J. 2022. Advances in field-based high-throughput photosynthetic phenotyping. Journal of Experimental Botany. 73(10):3157-3172.

Interpretive Summary: High-throughput phenotyping of photosynthesis are techniques that allows for rapid and non-destructive sampling of the process by which plants use sunlight to absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and convert it to biomass. The techniques consists of many different measurements and data analysis systems, many of which are very recent or still needing to be refined. Yet, measuring photosynthesis using high throughput techniques is critical to continued improvements in crop yield. In this study, we review high throughput phenotyping techniques and outline the lessons, challenges, and opportunities facing phenotyping of photosynthesis into the future.

Technical Abstract: Gas exchange techniques revolutionized plant research and advanced understanding, including associated fluxes and efficiencies, of photosynthesis, photorespiration, and respiration of plants from cellular to ecosystem scales. These techniques remain the gold standard for inferring photosynthetic rates and underlying physiology/biochemistry, although their utility for high-throughput phenotyping (HTP) of photosynthesis is limited by the number of gas exchange systems available and the number of personnel available to operate equipment. Remote sensing techniques have long been used to assess ecosystem productivity at coarse spatial and temporal resolutions, and advances in sensor technology coupled with advanced statistical techniques are expanding remote sensing tools to finer spatial scales and increasing the number and complexity of phenotypes that can be extracted. In this review, we outline photosynthetic phenotypes of interest to researchers and crop breeders and describe the advances in high-throughput techniques to characterize photosynthesis at spatial scales useful to infer treatment or genotypic variation in field-based experiments or breeding trials. We will accomplish this objective by presenting six lessons learned thus far through the development and application of proximal/remote sensing-based measurements and the accompanying statistical analyses. We will conclude by outlining what we perceive as the current limitations, bottlenecks, and opportunities facing HTP of photosynthesis.