Photosynthetica

, Volume 43, Issue 2, pp 161–176 | Cite as

How can calibrated research-based models be improved for use as a tool in identifying genes controlling crop tolerance to environmental stresses in the era of genomics—from an experimentalist's perspective

  • M. A. El-Sharkawy
Review

Abstract

Almost four decades have passed since the new field of ecosystem simulation sprang into full force as an added tool for a sound research in an ever-advancing scientific front. The enormous advances and new discoveries that recently took place in the field of molecular biology and basic genetics added more effective tools, have strengthened and increased the efficiency of science outputs in various areas, particularly in basic biological sciences. Now, we are entering into a more promising stage in science, i.e. ‘post-genomics’, where both simulation modelling and molecular biology tools are integral parts of experimental research in agricultural sciences. I briefly review the history of simulation of crop/environment systems in the light of advances in molecular biology, and most importantly the essential role of experimental research in developing and constructing more meaningful and effective models and technologies. Such anticipated technologies are expected to lead into better management of natural resources in relation to crop communities in particular and plant ecosystems in general, that might enhance productivity faster. Emphasis is placed on developing new technologies to improve agricultural productivity under stressful environments and to ensure sustainable economic development. The latter is essential since available natural resources, particularly land and water, are increasingly limiting.

Additional key words

acclimation adaptation cassava climate CO2; evapotranspiration genomics leaves photosynthesis productivity respiration soil water yield 

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Copyright information

© Institute of Experimental Botany, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Praha 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. A. El-Sharkawy
    • 1
  1. 1.Centro Internacional de Agricultura Tropical (CIAT)CaliColombia

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