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Open AccessReview

Morphological, Physiological, and Genetic Responses to Salt Stress in Alfalfa: A Review

Crop Development Center of Department of Plant Sciences, University of Saskatchewan, 51 Campus Drive, Saskatoon, SK S7N 5A8, Canada
Plant Gene Resources of Canada, Saskatoon Research and Development Centre, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, 107 Science Place, Saskatoon, SK S9H 3X2, Canada
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Agronomy 2020, 10(4), 577;
Received: 9 March 2020 / Revised: 14 April 2020 / Accepted: 14 April 2020 / Published: 17 April 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Breeding and Genetics of Forages for Semi-Arid and Arid Rangelands)
Alfalfa (Medicago sativa L.) is an important legume forage crop. However, its genetic improvement for salt tolerance is challenging, as alfalfa’s response to salt stress is genetically and physiologically complex. A review was made to update the knowledge of morphological, physiological, biochemical, and genetic responses of alfalfa plants to salt stress, and to discuss the potential of applying modern plant technologies to enhance alfalfa salt-resistant breeding, including genomic selection, RNA-Seq analysis, and cutting-edge Synchrotron beamlines. It is clear that alfalfa salt tolerance can be better characterized, genes conditioning salt tolerance be identified, and new marker-based tools be developed to accelerate alfalfa breeding for salt tolerance. View Full-Text
Keywords: alfalfa (Medicago sativa L.); salt stress; salt resistance alfalfa (Medicago sativa L.); salt stress; salt resistance
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Bhattarai, S.; Biswas, D.; Fu, Y.-B.; Biligetu, B. Morphological, Physiological, and Genetic Responses to Salt Stress in Alfalfa: A Review. Agronomy 2020, 10, 577.

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