Phloem pp 387-395 | Cite as

Using a Mathematical Model of Phloem Transport to Optimize Strategies for Crop Improvement

  • Motohide Seki
Part of the Methods in Molecular Biology book series (MIMB, volume 2014)


It is valuable to set an ideotype plant structure (i.e., ideal numbers and arrangement of sucrose sources, sinks, and pathways that maximize crop yield) as a goal for breeding with modern and near-future technologies. However, it is not easy to theoretically specify an ideotype because multiple factors need to be considered simultaneously. Here a method to obtain plant ideotypes using a simple mathematical model is described. The model identifies plant structures with maximal yield through a series of simulations of the dynamic changes in sucrose concentration at different positions of the plant. Originally developed for rice, this revised method can be applied to a wide range of crop plants.

Key words

Breeding Crop ideotype Hagen–Poiseuille equation Murray’s law Pressure-flow hypothesis Carbon allocation Sucrose transport 



I thank F. G. Feugier, X. Song, M. Ashikari, H. Nakamura, K. Ishiyama, T. Yamaya, M. Inari-Ikeda, H. Kitano, and A. Satake for their help in developing the present model.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Motohide Seki
    • 1
  1. 1.Faculty of DesignKyushu UniversityFukuokaJapan

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