Abiotic Stress Responses in Legumes: Strategies Used toCope with Environmental Challenges

Susana S. Araujo, Steve Beebe, Martin Crespi, Bruno Delbreil, Esther M. Gonzalez, Veronique Gruber, Isabelle Lejeune-Henaut, Wolfgang Link, Maria J. Monteros, Elena Prats, Idupulapati Rao, Vincent Vadez, Maria Carlota Patto

Research output: Contribution to journalLiterature review

98 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Legumes are well recognized for their nutritional and health benefits as well as for their impact in the sustainability of agricultural systems. The threatening scenario imposed by climate change highlights the need for concerted research approaches in order to develop crops that are able to cope with environmental stresses, while increasing yield and quality. During the last decade, some physiological components and molecular players underlying abiotic stress responses of a broad range of legume species have been elucidated. Plant physiology approaches provided general outlines of plant responses, identifying stress tolerance-related traits or elite cultivars. A thorough identification of candidate genes and quantitative trait loci (QTLs) associated with these traits followed. Model legumes like Medicago truncatula, Lotus japonicus, and more recently, Glycine max provided valuable translational approaches for dissecting legume responses to abiotic stresses. The challenge now focuses on the translation of the information gained in model systems in controlled environments to crops grown under field conditions. In this review, we provide a general overview of the recent achievements on the study of abiotic stress responses in a broad range of model, grain and forage legumes species, highlighting the different approaches used. Major accomplishments, as well as limitations or drawbacks are discussed across the different sections. Some perspectives regarding new approaches for screening, breeding or engineering legumes with desirable abiotic stress resistance traits are anticipated. These advances will support the development of legumes better adapted to environmental constraints, tackling current demands on modern agriculture and food production presently exacerbated by global climate changes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)237-280
Number of pages44
JournalCritical Reviews In Plant Sciences
Volume34
Issue number1-3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2015

Keywords

  • molecular breeding
  • quantitative genetics
  • model and crop legumes
  • abiotic stress
  • phenotyping
  • genomics
  • physiology
  • BEAN PHASEOLUS-VULGARIS
  • VICIA-FABA L
  • PISUM-SATIVUM-L.
  • CICER-ARIETINUM L.
  • ALFALFA MEDICAGO-SATIVA
  • QUANTITATIVE TRAIT LOCI
  • WATER-USE EFFICIENCY
  • TRANSCRIPTION FACTOR GENE
  • PEA LATHYRUS-SATIVUS
  • VIGNA-UNGUICULATA L.

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