Root system architecture is a vital part of the plant that has been shown to vary between species and within species based on response to genotypic and/or environmental influences. The root traits of wheat seedlings are critical for their establishment in soil and evidently linked to plant height and seed yield. However, plant breeders have not efficiently developed the role of RSA in wheat selection due to the difficulty of studying root traits. We set up a root phenotyping platform to characterize RSA in 34 wheat accessions. The phenotyping pipeline consists of the germination paper-based moisture replacement system, image capture units, and root-image processing software. The 34 accessions from two different wheat ploidy levels (hexaploids and tetraploids), were characterized in ten replicates. A total of 19 root traits were quantified from the root architecture generated. This pipeline allowed for rapid screening of 340 wheat seedlings within 10 days. At least one line from each ploidy (6× and 4×) showed significant differences (p < 0.05) in measured traits, except for mean seminal count. Our result also showed a strong correlation (0.8) between total root length, maximum depth and convex hull area. This phenotyping pipeline has the advantage and capacity to increase screening potential at early stages of plant development, leading to the characterization of wheat seedling traits that can be further examined using QTL analysis in populations generated from the examined accessions.
Adeleke, E.; Millas, R.; McNeal, W.; Faris, J.; Taheri, A. Variation Analysis of Root System Development in Wheat Seedlings Using Root Phenotyping System. Agronomy 2020, 10, 206. https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy10020206