研究成果

World’s first successful development of wheat that shows high productivity with less nitrogen fertilizer
-- Use of ammonium to prevent nitrogen pollution and increase food production at the same time --

Related Research Program
Environment

 

World’s first successful development of wheat that shows high productivity with less nitrogen fertilizer
-- Use of ammonium to prevent nitrogen pollution and increase food production at the same time --

 

Key Points

  • Transferring the high biological nitrification inhibition (BNI) ability of wild-grass to high-yielding wheat cultivar led to the successful development of the world's first BNI-enhanced wheat cultivar
  • BNI-enhanced wheat suppresses nitrification and utilizes ammonium efficiently, with research showing productivity that can be maintained with 60% less nitrogen fertilizer
  • Expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and water pollution from wheat farmlands, which occupy approximately 225 million hectares worldwide

Overview

  JIRCAS, in collaboration with the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT), University of the Basque Country, and Nihon University, has succeeded in developing biological nitrification inhibition (BNI)-enhanced wheat that shows high productivity even when the amount of nitrogen fertilizer is reduced.
  The BNI-enhanced wheat was obtained by an intergeneric cross of a closely related wild-grass (Leymus racemosus) with high BNI potential and a high-yielding wheat cultivar with BNI capacity. We identified the chromosome region that controls the BNI ability in wild-grass, which enabled us to introduce the BNI ability by crossbreeding.
  In addition, BNI-enhanced wheat improves soil ammonium levels by delaying nitrification in soil, thereby increasing wheat productivity even in low nitrogen environments. This research is also positioned in the “Strategy for Sustainable Food Systems, MeaDRI” of the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries.
  By adding the BNI ability derived from the wild-grass to various wheat cultivars for the world's approximately 225 million hectares of wheat-growing areas, we can expect to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from wheat farming and water pollution caused by nitrification, and mitigate global warming while improving productivity.

The results of this research have been published in the online edition of the scientific journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS) on August 24, 2021 (Japan time).

Publication

Authors
GV Subbarao, M Kishii, A Bozal-Leorri, I Orits-Monesterio, X Gao, MI Ibba, H Karwat, MB Gonzalez-Moro, C Gonzalez-Murua, T Yoshihashi, S Tobita, V Kommerell, HJ Braun, M Iwanaga
Title
Enlisting wild grass genes to combat nitrification in wheat farming: A nature-based solution
Journal
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of United States of America (PNAS)
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.2106595118

For Inquiries

JIRCAS President              KOYAMA Osamu
Program Director              HAYASHI Keiichi
Principal Investigators   SUBBARAO Guntur (Crop, Livestock and Environment Division)
                                                     YOSHIHASHI Tadashi (Biological Resources and Post-harvest Division)
Press Coordinator             OMORI Keisuke (Head, Information and Public Relations Office)
E-mail                                    koho-jircas@ml.affrc.go.jp