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Curr Opin Biotechnol. 2005 Apr;16(2):147-53.

Yield enhancement genes: seeds for growth.

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  • 1CropDesign NV, Technologiepark 3, B-9052 Gent, Belgium.


Yield is a multifactorial trait, integrating various developmental and physiological processes. Despite this complexity, evidence is mounting that yield can be increased by the genetic modification of single genes. Positive results have been obtained by targeting different yield constituents, indicating that there is ample room for further yield improvement by genetic means. Successful targets include photosynthesis, starch biosynthesis, plant architecture and transcriptional networks controlling plant development. Most of the current data have been obtained in a (semi-)controlled environment and relate to yield calculated on a per plant basis. Demonstrating the ability to transfer these effects to field-grown plants and with reference to yield on a per area unit basis will be a crucial step in establishing the agronomic importance of these findings.

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