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Molecular Breeding

, 39:145 | Cite as

Water-saving and drought-resistance rice: from the concept to practice and theory

  • Lijun LuoEmail author
  • Hanwei Mei
  • Xinqiao Yu
  • Hui Xia
  • Liang Chen
  • Hongyan Liu
  • Anning Zhang
  • Kai Xu
  • Haibin Wei
  • Guolan Liu
  • Feiming Wang
  • Yi Liu
  • Xiaosong Ma
  • Qiaojun Lou
  • Fangjun Feng
  • Liguo Zhou
  • Shoujun Chen
  • Ming Yan
  • Zaochang Liu
  • Junguo Bi
  • Tianfei Li
  • Mingshou Li
Review
  • 59 Downloads

Abstract

The resource and environmental challenges faced by rice production call for resource-saving and environment-friendly rice varieties. Water-saving and drought-resistance rice (WDR) is a new type of cultivated rice combining both high yield potential and acceptable grain quality as a current lowland paddy rice, as well as water-saving and drought resistance as a traditional upland rice. The lowland and upland rice are two ecotypes adapted to contrasting soil water status, originating mainly because of their differentiated drought resistance. Upland rice, domesticated in a water–limited environment and experiencing a bidirectional selection process, has better drought resistance and especially better drought avoidance. Though the potential tradeoff between drought resistance and productivity is very common in rice, the bidirectional selection could overcome this tradeoff and accumulate recombination genotypes. It is very important to choose elite parents on the basis of studies on the great genetic diversity of rice yield and drought resistance among the rice germplasm resources and adapt the bidirectional selection strategies to especially integrate drought avoidance, drought tolerance, high water use efficiency, and productivity in WDR breeding. The breeding history and genomic studies indicated that lowland paddy rice and upland rice hybridization breeding with suitable selection in different environments is an effective approach to improving complex traits such as yield potential and drought resistance. Meanwhile, molecular technology shows higher efficiency on value-added breeding such as transferring and pyramiding pest- and disease-resistant genes, which helps WDR obtain other green characters. Twenty-two WDR varieties were registered and distributed to farmers in recent years and could be planted in both irrigated and rainfed ecosystems, thus showing promising application prospects. The major crop management technology of WDR in lowland paddy fields with water-saving cultivation and in rainfed fields by dry seeding with aerobic cultivation were also discussed in this article.

Keywords

Water-saving and drought-resistance rice Drought avoidance Drought tolerance Water use efficiency Productivity Bidirectional selection 

Abbreviations

GSR

Green super rice

WDR

Water-saving and drought-resistance rice

WUE

Water use efficiency

CMS

Cytoplasmic male sterility

PTSGMS

Photo-thermosensitive genic male sterile

Notes

Acknowledgements

The author thanks all his colleagues and students for their great contributions on researches and application of WDR.

Funding information

The works is supported by National Key R&D Program of China (2016YFD0100101-13, 2017YFD0300103, 2017YFD0100304), National High-Tech Research and Development Program of China (2014AA10A601-2, 2014AA10A603, 2014AA10A604), Shanghai Agriculture Applied Technology Development Program, China (2017-02-08-00-08-F00071, 2018-02-08-00-08-F01553, and G2016060107), National Natural Science Foundation (31671672 and 31871601), the Rockefeller foundation (2004FS039), and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (OPP1130530-4).

Compliance with ethical standards

Competing interests

The authors declare no competing interests.

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lijun Luo
    • 1
    Email author
  • Hanwei Mei
    • 1
  • Xinqiao Yu
    • 1
  • Hui Xia
    • 1
  • Liang Chen
    • 1
  • Hongyan Liu
    • 1
  • Anning Zhang
    • 1
  • Kai Xu
    • 1
  • Haibin Wei
    • 1
  • Guolan Liu
    • 1
  • Feiming Wang
    • 1
  • Yi Liu
    • 1
  • Xiaosong Ma
    • 1
  • Qiaojun Lou
    • 1
  • Fangjun Feng
    • 1
  • Liguo Zhou
    • 1
  • Shoujun Chen
    • 1
  • Ming Yan
    • 1
  • Zaochang Liu
    • 1
  • Junguo Bi
    • 1
  • Tianfei Li
    • 1
  • Mingshou Li
    • 1
  1. 1.Shanghai Agrobiological Gene CenterShanghaiChina

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