Oil crops for the future

Curr Opin Plant Biol. 2020 Aug;56:181-189. doi: 10.1016/j.pbi.2019.12.003. Epub 2020 Jan 23.


Agriculture faces enormous challenges including the need to substantially increase productivity, reduce environmental footprint, and deliver renewable alternatives that are being addressed by developing new oil crops for the future. The efforts include domestication of Lepidium spp. using genomics-aided breeding as a cold hardy perennial high-yielding oil crop that provides substantial environmental benefits, expands the geography for oil crops, and improves farmers' economy. In addition, genetic engineering in Crambe abyssinica may lead to a dedicated industrial oil crop to replace fossil oil. Redirection of photosynthates from starch to oil in plant tubers and cereal endosperm also provides a path for enhancing oil production to meet the growing demands for food, fuel, and biomaterials. Insect pheromone components are produced in seed oil plants in a cost-effective and environmentally friendly pest management replacing synthetically produced pheromones. Autophagy is explored for increasing crop fitness and oil accumulation using genetic engineering in Arabidopsis.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Agriculture
  • Arabidopsis*
  • Crops, Agricultural* / genetics
  • Domestication
  • Seeds