Genetics and Breeding of Flooding Tolerance in Rice



Flooding is a frequent natural calamity, affecting global food supply and financial security. The intensity of rainfall events is expected to increase under future climate change scenarios, which will greatly impact rice production. Different flooding patterns can cause damage or complete yield loss in rice plants at different stages of growth. This includes (a) complete submergence due to flash flood at vegetative or pre-flowering stages, (b) stagnant flooding of medium-deep water and deepwater or floating rice, and (c) submergence at germination or anaerobic germination. Different molecular and physiological mechanisms underly tolerance to each type of flooding. Several major QTLs have been mapped and several key genes underlying the QTLs have been cloned. Remarkable progress has been achieved through conventional and molecular breeding strategies in developing tolerant varieties to mitigate the impact of different flood events. This effort will be continued in the future by incorporating new QTLs/genes and tolerance to other abiotic and biotic stresses according to the needs of the target regions. Genetics, genomics, and other modern technologies will also be continuously explored to further our understanding of how rice plants cope with different types of flooding stress.


Flooding tolerance Sub1 varieties Stagnant flooding Deepwater rice Anaerobic germination QTLs Genes Molecular breeding 



The work of the authors reported here was supported by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) through the Stress-Tolerant Rice for Africa and South Asia (STRASA) projects, grants from the German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), and Global Rice Science Partnership (GRiSP). Additional support to E.M.S. was provided by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, US Department of Agriculture under award number 2017-67013-26194 and Hatch project 1009300.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Soil and Crop SciencesTexas A&M UniversityCollege StationUSA
  2. 2.MARS Inc. and Department of Plant SciencesUniversity of CaliforniaDavisUSA

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