Genome elimination: translating basic research into a future tool for plant breeding

PLoS Biol. 2014 Jun 10;12(6):e1001876. doi: 10.1371/journal.pbio.1001876. eCollection 2014 Jun.


During the course of our history, humankind has been through different periods of agricultural improvement aimed at enhancing our food supply and the performance of food crops. In recent years, it has become apparent that future crop improvement efforts will require new approaches to address the local challenges of farmers while empowering discovery across industry and academia. New plant breeding approaches are needed to meet this challenge to help feed a growing world population. Here I discuss how a basic research discovery is being translated into a potential future tool for plant breeding, and share the story of researcher Simon Chan, who recognized the potential application of this new approach--genome elimination--for the breeding of staple food crops in Africa and South America.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Breeding / methods*
  • Chromosome Deletion
  • Crops, Agricultural / genetics*
  • Genetic Techniques*
  • Genome, Plant*