The recent availability of high-throughput genetic and genomic data allows the genetic architecture of complex traits to be systematically mapped. The application of these genetic results to design and breed new crop types can be made possible through systems mapping. Systems mapping is a computational model that dissects a complex phenotype into its underlying components, coordinates different components in terms of biological laws through mathematical equations and maps specific genes that mediate each component and its connection with other components. Here, we present a new direction of systems mapping by integrating this tool with carbon economy. With an optimal spatial distribution of carbon fluxes between sources and sinks, plants tend to maximize whole-plant growth and competitive ability under limited availability of resources. We argue that such an economical strategy for plant growth and development, once integrated with systems mapping, will not only provide mechanistic insights into plant biology, but also help to spark a renaissance of interest in ideotype breeding in crops and trees.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Information Systems
- Molecular Biology