Maintaining higher leaf photosynthesis after heading stage could promote biomass accumulation in rice

Sotaro Honda, Satoshi Ohkubo, Nan Su San, Anothai Nakkasame, Kazuki Tomisawa, Keisuke Katsura, Taiichiro Ookawa, Atsushi J. Nagano, Shunsuke Adachi

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10 Citations (Scopus)


Leaf photosynthetic rate changes across the growing season as crop plants age. Most studies of leaf photosynthesis focus on a specific growth stage, leaving the question of which pattern of photosynthetic dynamics maximizes crop productivity unanswered. Here we obtained high-frequency data of canopy leaf CO2 assimilation rate (A) of two elite rice (Oryza sativa) cultivars and 76 inbred lines across the whole growing season. The integrated A value after heading was positively associated with crop growth rate (CGR) from heading to harvest, but that before heading was not. A curve-smoothing analysis of A after heading showed that accumulated A at > 80% of its maximum (A80) was positively correlated with CGR in analyses of all lines mixed and of lines grouped by genetic background, while the maximum A and accumulated A at ≤ 80% were less strongly correlated with CGR. We also found a genomic region (~ 12.2 Mb) that may enhance both A80 and aboveground biomass at harvest. We propose that maintaining a high A after heading, rather than having high maximum A, is a potential target for enhancing rice biomass accumulation.

Original languageEnglish
Article number7579
JournalScientific reports
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Dec
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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