Influence of Environment on Protein Content of Rice1
- K. A. Gomez and
- S. K. De Datta2
Recognition of world-wide protein malnutrition has focused greater emphasis on improving rice (Oryza sativa L.) protein content, either through breeding for high-protein cultivars or through manipulation of environment and cultural practices. This study was undertaken to investigate the overall influence of environment on the protein content of rice, to identify cultural practices that can be used to increase protein content without sacrificing grain yield, and to examine the relationships between grain yield and protein content.
Since 1968, the International Rice Research Institute has collected from rice field experiments voluminous data on grain yield and protein content on several of its promising rice cultivars. For this study, we examined data from 964 experimental plots of ‘IR8’ and 538 plots of ‘IR480-5-9.’ Protein content ranged from 4.8 to 12.1% in IR8 and 6.4 to 17.4% in IR480-5-9. Crop season, location, N fertilization, water management, and weed control were the major sources of variation in protein content. It was also found that grain yield and protein content can be increased simultaneously, but only up to a certain point (protein-yield threshold) beyond which further increase in the protein content results in a decrease in grain yield. The protein-yield threshold was higher for IR480-5-9 (10.3%) than for IR8 (8.5%). The existence of protein yield threshold in rice cultivars has significant implication in the improvement of protein content in rice grains, either through breeding or improved cultural practices.Please view the pdf by using the Full Text (PDF) link under 'View' to the left.
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