Potential breeding target genes for enhancing agronomic drought resistance: A yield-survival balance perspective

Yuhan Liu, Kang Ning, Shuting Chen, Menachem Moshelion, Pei Xu*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Amidst global climate warming, the urgency to enhance crop drought resistance has reached unprecedented levels. However, the achievement of superior drought-resistant crop varieties, despite substantial research investments, remains constrained. This limited success in transitioning from the laboratory to the field can be partly attributed to the disparity between evaluating biological and agronomic drought resistance (ADR). ADR places emphasis on minimizing yield losses during drought conditions and maintaining robust performance under normal circumstances. Here, we present a comprehensive overview of ADR genes reported during the past decades, categorized based on their yield performance under both drought and standard growth conditions. We highlight 23 genes from grain and legume crops, providing insight into their working mechanisms. Particularly, we delve into their efficacy in improving yields predominantly through transgenic approaches in field conditions. Furthermore, we briefly touch upon the adoption of emerging phenomics technologies, which can streamline the discovery and application of ADR genes. This review is poised to serve the breeding community, aiding in the selection of appropriate target genes to augment crop drought resistance.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)721-731
Number of pages11
JournalPlant Breeding
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 Wiley-VCH GmbH. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


  • ADR genesbreedingdrought resistanceyield-survival balance


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