Drought avoidance and phenotypic flexibility of sweet potato (Ipomoea batatas (L.) Lam.) under water Sarcity conditions

Gouveia Carla S.S., Ganança José F.T., Nóbrega Humberto G.M., de Freitas José G.R., Lebot Vincent, Pinheiro de Carvalho Miguel A.A.. 2019. Drought avoidance and phenotypic flexibility of sweet potato (Ipomoea batatas (L.) Lam.) under water Sarcity conditions. Notulae Botanicae Horti Agrobotanici Cluj-Napoca, 47 (4) : pp. 1037-1046.

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Quartile : Q3, Sujet : PLANT SCIENCES

Abstract : Sweet potato (Ipomoea batatas (L.) Lam.)is an important staple food in several regions of the world. Water scarcity is the most devastating abiotic stress, with a great impact on crop productivity, food security, and subsistence. Drought restricts the nutrient intake and transport into the plant. Tolerant crops have morphological mechanisms of drought avoidance and/or phenotypic flexibility, showing also good water and nutrient efficiency. However, that information is scarce for sweet potato, which is usually based on physiological traits of plant productivity. Here, we show the physiological responses of eight sweet potato accessions subjected to a 3 months' drought period, by recording their differences for nutrient and leaf chlorophyll content, biomass and stress level. Our results showed that the differences in water use efficiency (WUE, +68.1%), chlorophyll content index (CCI,-5.3%), total plant biomass (TPB, -55.4%), nutrient efficiency (NER, +38.1%) and nutrient harvest index (NHI, +2.9%) where significantly correlated with the water regime. The water shortage led to a drought avoidance response, with TPB loss in all accessions. Distinct phenotypic flexibility responses were also recorded and explained by the root:shoot ratio (R:S) and stress index (SI) variation of the storage root and shoot growth. This information could be relevant for the development of sweet potato breeding programs, adapting this crop to climate change.

Mots-clés Agrovoc : Ipomoea batatas, Résistance à la sécheresse, Stress dû à la sécheresse, Phénotype, adaptation aux changements climatiques

Mots-clés libres : Patate douce, Ipomoea batatas, Sécheresse, Adaptation, Amélioration génétique

Classification Agris : F30 - Plant genetics and breeding
F60 - Plant physiology and biochemistry
P40 - Meteorology and climatology
F50 - Plant structure

Champ stratégique Cirad : CTS 4 (2019-) - Santé des plantes, des animaux et des écosystèmes

Auteurs et affiliations

  • Gouveia Carla S.S., University of Madeira (PRT) - auteur correspondant
  • Ganança José F.T., University of Madeira (PRT)
  • Nóbrega Humberto G.M., University of Madeira (PRT)
  • de Freitas José G.R., University of Madeira (PRT)
  • Lebot Vincent, CIRAD-BIOS-UMR AGAP (VUT)
  • Pinheiro de Carvalho Miguel A.A., University of Madeira (PRT)

Source : Cirad-Agritrop (

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