Characterization of pearl millet root architecture and anatomy reveals three types of lateral roots
Passot, Sixtine and Gnacko, Fatoumata and Moukouanga, Daniel and Lucas, Mikaël and Guyomarc’h, Soazig and Ortega, Beatriz Moreno and Atkinson, Jonathan A. and Belko, Marème N. and Bennett, Malcolm J. and Gantet, Pascal and Wells, Darren M. and Guédon, Yann and Vigouroux, Yves and Verdeil, Jean-Luc and Muller, Bertrand and Laplaze, Laurent (2016) Characterization of pearl millet root architecture and anatomy reveals three types of lateral roots. Frontiers in Plant Science, 7 . p. 829. ISSN 1664-462X
Pearl millet plays an important role for food security in arid regions of Africa and India. Nevertheless, it is considered an orphan crop as it lags far behind other cereals in terms of genetic improvement efforts. Breeding pearl millet varieties with improved root traits promises to deliver benefits in water and nutrient acquisition. Here, we characterize of early pearl millet root system development using several different root phenotyping approaches that include rhizotrons and microCT. We report that early stage pearl millet root system development is characterized by a fast growing primary root that quickly colonizes deeper soil horizons. We also describe root anatomical studies that revealed 3 distinct types of lateral roots that form on both primary roots and crown roots. Finally, we detected significant variation for two root architectural traits in pearl millet inbred lines. This study provides the basis for subsequent genetic experiments to identify loci associated with interesting early root development traits in this important cereal.
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