Grain-filling problem in 'super' rice

Jianchang Yang, Jianhua ZHANG*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

344 Citations (Scopus)


Modern rice (Oryza sativa L.) cultivars, especially the newly bred 'super' rice, have numerous spikelets on a panicle with a large yield capacity. However, these cultivars often fail to achieve their high yield potential due to poor grain-filling of later-flowering inferior spikelets (in contrast to the earlier-flowering superior spikelets). Conventional thinking to explain the poor grain-filling is the consequence of carbon limitation. Recent studies, however, have shown that carbohydrate supply should not be the major problem because they have adequate sucrose at their initial grain-filling stage. The low activities of key enzymes in carbon metabolism may contribute to the poor grain-filling. Proper field practices, such as moderate soil drying during mid-and late grain-filling stages, could solve some problems in poor grain-filling. Further studies are needed by molecular approaches to investigate the signal transport, the hormonal action, the gene expressions, and the biochemical processes in inferior spikelets.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-5
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Experimental Botany
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2010

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Physiology
  • Plant Science

User-Defined Keywords

  • Carbohydrate metabolism
  • Grain-filling
  • Inferior spikelets
  • Soil drying
  • Super rice


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