Breeding progress and preparedness for mass-scale deployment of perennial lignocellulosic biomass crops switchgrass, miscanthus, willow, and poplar

A - Papers appearing in refereed journals

Clifton-Brown, J., Harfouche, A., Casler, M. D., Jones, H. D., Macalpine, W. J., Murphy-Bokern, D., Smart, L. B., Adler, A., Ashman, C., Awty-Carroll, D., Bastien, C., Bopper, S., Botnari, V., Brancourt-Hulmel, M., Chen, Z., Clark, L. V., Cosentino, S., Dalton, S., Davey, C., Dolstra, O., Donnison, I., Flavell, R., Greef, J., Hanley, S. J., Hastings, A., Hertzberg, M., Hsu, T., Huang, L., Iurato, A., Jensen, E., Jin, X., Jørgensen, U., Kiesel, A., Kim, D., Liu, J., McCalmont, J. P., McMahon, B. G., Mos, M., Robson, P., Sacks, E. J., Sandu, A., Scalici, G., Schwarz, K., Scordia, D., Shafiei, R., Shield, I. F., Slavov, G., Stanton, B. J., Swaminathan, K., Taylor, G., Torres, A. F., Trindade, L. M., Tschaplinski, T., Tuskan, J., Yamada, T., Yu, C. Y., Zalesny, R., Zong, J. and Lewandowski, I. 2018. Breeding progress and preparedness for mass-scale deployment of perennial lignocellulosic biomass crops switchgrass, miscanthus, willow, and poplar. GCB Bioenergy.

AuthorsClifton-Brown, J., Harfouche, A., Casler, M. D., Jones, H. D., Macalpine, W. J., Murphy-Bokern, D., Smart, L. B., Adler, A., Ashman, C., Awty-Carroll, D., Bastien, C., Bopper, S., Botnari, V., Brancourt-Hulmel, M., Chen, Z., Clark, L. V., Cosentino, S., Dalton, S., Davey, C., Dolstra, O., Donnison, I., Flavell, R., Greef, J., Hanley, S. J., Hastings, A., Hertzberg, M., Hsu, T., Huang, L., Iurato, A., Jensen, E., Jin, X., Jørgensen, U., Kiesel, A., Kim, D., Liu, J., McCalmont, J. P., McMahon, B. G., Mos, M., Robson, P., Sacks, E. J., Sandu, A., Scalici, G., Schwarz, K., Scordia, D., Shafiei, R., Shield, I. F., Slavov, G., Stanton, B. J., Swaminathan, K., Taylor, G., Torres, A. F., Trindade, L. M., Tschaplinski, T., Tuskan, J., Yamada, T., Yu, C. Y., Zalesny, R., Zong, J. and Lewandowski, I.
Abstract

Genetic improvement through breeding is one of the key approaches to increasing biomass supply. This paper documents the breeding progress to date for four perennial biomass crops (PBCs) that have high output‐input energy ratios: namely Panicum virgatum (switchgrass), species of the genera Miscanthus (miscanthus), Salix (willow) and Populus (poplar). For each crop, we report on the size of germplasm collections, the efforts to date to phenotype and genotype the diversity available for breeding, and on the scale of breeding work as indicated by number of attempted deliberate crosses. We also report on the development of faster and more precise breeding using molecular breeding techniques. Poplar is the model tree for genetic studies and is furthest ahead in terms of biological knowledge and genetic resources. Linkage maps, transgenesis, and genome editing methods are now being used in commercially focused poplar breeding. These are in development in switchgrass, miscanthus and willow generating large genetic and phenotypic datasets requiring concomitant efforts in informatics to create summaries that can be accessed and used by practical breeders. Cultivars of switchgrass and miscanthus can be seed‐based synthetic populations, semi‐hybrids or clones. Willow and poplar cultivars are commercially deployed as clones. At local and regional level, the most advanced cultivars in each crop are at technology readiness levels which could be scaled to planting rates of thousands of hectares per year in about 5 years with existing commercial developers. Investment in further development of better cultivars is subject to current market failure and the long breeding cycles. We conclude that sustained public investment in breeding plays a key role in delivering future mass‐scale deployment of PBCs

KeywordsPerennial biomass crop; Panicum virgatum; Miscanthus; M. sinensis; M. sacchariflorus; Salix spp; Populus spp; Bioenergy; Lignocellulose; Feedstocks
Year of Publication2018
JournalGCB Bioenergy
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.1111/gcbb.12566
Web address (URL)https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/gcbb.12566
Open accessPublished as green open access
Funder project or codeMaximising carbon harvest from perennial crops
FunderDepartment of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Accepted author manuscriptClifton-Brown_et_al-2018-GCB_Bioenergy.pdf
Output statusPublished
Publication dates
Online19 Sep 2018
Publication process dates
Accepted19 Sep 2018
Copyright licenseCC BY
PublisherWiley-Blackwell
Wiley
ISSN1757-1693

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