Special Issue "TILLING and CRISPR to design the varieties of tomorrow"
Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 October 2019).
The 2016 report of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs of the United Nations, states, in Sustainable Development Goal 2, that food production will need to increase by 50 percent globally to meet the growing human population demand. Since the green revolution in the 1960s, classical breeding has been the main driving force of yield increase in major crops. However, in the course of the last few decades, new threats, all human-made, have emerged as bottlenecks for today’s agriculture and traditional breeding is struggling to solve them.
The scientific community is not standing idly by. Huge progress has been made in the understanding of the molecular mechanisms controlling biological processes, and every day new discoveries are published. For instance, the genes controlling growth and development as well as resistance to biotic and abiotic stresses have been identified and characterized. Unfortunately, the translation of the findings in leader alleles that breeders can use to develop the varieties of tomorrow have not matched that progress. Consequently, the exploitation of the wealth of information available to modify output traits in crops is still below our expectations.
Nevertheless, the development of reverse genetics strategies, where one first identifies a target gene based on its sequence identity and then proceeds with the phenotypic characterization of mutant alleles, open new opportunities in the field of translational research. TILLING and CRISPR-Cas9 are two technologies that could readily translate fundamental data into leader alleles. TILLING stands for targeted induced local lesions in the genome. CRISPR-Cas9 stands for Clustered regularly inter spaced short palindromic repeats associated Cas9. Both techniques provide an easy and cost-effective way to saturate a genome with mutations. In this Special Issue, we would like to invite researchers to describe their ideas and works relating to allele engineering, using TILLING and CRISPR, in the optic to create new traits.
Prof. Abdelhafid Bendahmane
Manuscript Submission Information
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- allele engineering
- new traits
- translational research
- mutant collections
- genetic screens