Wheat adaptation to climate change in the Mediterranean Basin: retracing the past to predict the future

Poggi, Giovanni Maria (2024) Wheat adaptation to climate change in the Mediterranean Basin: retracing the past to predict the future, [Dissertation thesis], Alma Mater Studiorum Università di Bologna. Dottorato di ricerca in Scienze della terra, della vita e dell'ambiente, 36 Ciclo.
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Wheat productivity is alarmingly threatened by climate change in the Mediterranean Basin, where it is mainly cultivated as a rainfed crop and where the latest climatic projections foresee a rise in temperatures and a reduction in precipitation, with important yield losses expected, being drought the main abiotic stress hampering wheat productivity. Assessing and quantifying the alterations in wheat life cycle caused by climate change is thus a key goal, as well as understating the underlying mechanisms of drought resistance. The first part of this thesis is focused on these main topics. A precise quantification of climate change effects on wheat in this area was performed through a case study, coupling phenological, meteorological and grain quality data before and after climate change. Then, accurate and detailed literature search was performed, reviewing the main controversies regarding the reliability of various functional traits to be used as breeding tools for improving wheat drought stress resistance. The second part of this thesis is focused in identifying interesting genetic material to improve wheat drought stress resistance in the Mediterranean Basin, analyzing drought response on a panel of tetraploid wheat accessions in vitro and in vivo as well as in open field trials, chosen in the attempt to represent as much as possible the biodiversity of tetraploid wheat. The third part of this thesis highlights differences in technological, nutritional and nutraceutical quality between modern cultivars and landraces, focusing on lipids, primary metabolites and bioactive compounds. In fact, wheat adaptation to climate change does not only mean to guarantee satisfactory yields in adverse conditions. It also means to provide millions of consumers with a diet-base food crop, with an improved nutraceutical and nutritional quality. Therefore, investigation and selection process for abiotic stress resistance and for improved quality has to go hand in hand.

Tipologia del documento
Tesi di dottorato
Poggi, Giovanni Maria
Dottorato di ricerca
Settore disciplinare
Settore concorsuale
Parole chiave
wheat, drought stress, drought tolerance, climate change, nutritional quality, breeding
Data di discussione
4 Aprile 2024

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