Dr. Marcus Jansen has read the newly published book “High-Throuput Plant Phenotyping” by Argelia Lorence and Karina Medina-Jimenez from the Arkansas State University (USA) for you. Here you can read his opinion.
The recently published book “High-Throughput Plant Phenotyping – Methods and Protocols”, edited by Argelia Lorence and Karina Medina-Jimenez from the Arkansas State University (USA) provides an inspiring overview on current methods, techniques, experimental procedures, and data processing tools for plant phenotyping. Moreover, it sets the scene to connect phenotyping with biochemistry and molecular biology, and thus links it closer to plant breeding.
The book provides several case studies on using commercial systems, such as automated LemnaTec phenotyping instruments, or user-built phenotyping technologies in measurements of plants. They comprise not only crops, e.g., bean plants, but also the widespread model plant Arabidopsis thaliana and an example on phenotyping liverworts. The studies address phenotypic responses to environmental factors as well as phenotypes controlled by genetic factors.
Several considerations are given on planning and designing experiments in the plant breeding context. For breeders, phenotypic data are essential when rating the performance of candidate genotypes. Thus, implementing phenotyping technologies in breeding requires thorough planning of sample preparation and measuring procedures. The book provides examples and guidelines on experimental design as well as on statistics.
As phenotyping technologies frequently use non-invasive sensing, the book provides insight how to choose application-oriented sensing technology and how to extract relevant information from sensor data, for both structural and physiological phenotyping. Thereby, examples are given that not only comprise classical imaging but also include chlorophyll fluorescence, x-ray imaging, and positron emission tomography (PET). Moreover, it addresses the issue of designing clever sensor carriers that enable measurements in challenging environments.
As phenotypes always are influenced by physiology and thus by genetics, the book is completed by considerations on metabolite phenotyping and molecular methods for phenotypic analyses.
Taken together, this book provides an excellent overview of the state-of-the-art phenotyping methods and sets the scene for applications in research and breeding.