Alejandro Del Pozo

Alejandro Del Pozo
Universidad de Talca · Faculty of Agriculture Science

PhD

About

205
Publications
46,622
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Introduction
Alejandro del Pozo is the director of the Plant Breeding and Phenomic Center (www.fenomica.utalca.cl) of the Faculty of Agricultural Science, Universidad de Talca, Chile. My research interest is in various aspect of crop ecophysiology to understand yield potential and tolerance to abiotic stresses. We use phenomic (phenotypic characterization) and genomic (molecular characterization) techniques to identify elite genotypes with greater stress tolerance that can be incorporated in breeding programs. I am also involved in studies of grassland ecology (diversity and productivity) in relation to land use, and of ecological rehabilitation of degraded agroecosystem in Mediterranean environments, using legumes and other functional groups of plants.
Additional affiliations
August 2005 - August 2019
Universidad de Talca
Position
  • Professor (Full)

Publications

Publications (205)
Chapter
Due to climate change and expected food shortage in the coming decades, not only will it be necessary to develop cultivars with greater tolerance to environmental stress, but it is also imperative to reduce breeding cycle time. In addition to yield evaluation, plant breeders resort to many sensory assessments and some others of intermediate complex...
Article
Full-text available
The onset and rate of senescence influence key agronomical traits, including grain yield (GY). Our objective was to assess the relationships between stay-green and GY in a set of fourteen spring bread wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) genotypes with contrasting tolerance to water stress. Based on leaf chlorophyll content index (Chl) and normalized veget...
Article
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Both the temperate-humid zone and the southern part of the Mediterranean climate region of Chile are characterized by high wheat productivity. Study objectives were to analyze the yield potential, yield progress, and genetic progress of the winter bread wheat ( Triticum aestivum L.) cultivars and changes in agronomic and morphophysiological traits...
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Grain development in cereals depends on synthesis and remobilisation compounds such as water-soluble carbohydrates (WSCs), amino acids (AAs), minerals and environmental conditions during pre- and post-anthesis. This study analyses the impact of water stress on metabolite (WSCs, AAs and nitrogen) dynamics between the source (leaves and stems) and si...
Article
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The phenotypic diversity and productivity of a diverse alfalfa (M. sativa subspp.) panel of cultivars, landraces and wild relatives with putative drought tolerance were evaluated in two Mediterranean environments (central Chile and Southern Australia). In Chile, 70 accessions were evaluated in rainfed conditions and in Australia 30 accessions under...
Article
Water deficit is the most limiting factor for wheat production, so wheat-breeding programmes are currently focused on developing high-performance genotypes under such conditions. Carbon isotope discrimination (∆¹³C) in grains is a trait closely related to yield and stress tolerance. However, conventional measurement of ∆¹³C is expensive, limiting i...
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Changing climates and associated increased variability pose risks to alfalfa cultivation, with the requirement to establish, survive and maintain production under water stress. Crop wild relatives (CWR) of alfalfa include populations that have evolved to survive in a number of different, extreme environments, but until recently have had limited use...
Chapter
Four domesticated lupin species, white lupin (L. albus L.), narrow-leafed lupin (L. angustifolius L.), yellow lupin (L. luteus L.), and sweet pearl lupin (L. mutabilis Sweet.) are cultivated in about 1 Mha around the world. The life cycle of lupin can be divided into three phases: vegetative, floral and pod, and seed growth. Most lupins are indeter...
Article
Investigating the key traits associated with genetic gains in grain yield (GY) is essential for developing winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) breeding strategies. The study objectives were: (a) quantifying the photosynthetic contribution of flag leaf and ear to the grain filling; (b) analyzing if their contributions are associated with the genetic...
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Wheat roots are known to play an important role in the yield performance under water-limited (WL) conditions. Three consecutive year trials (2015, 2016, and 2017) were conducted in a glasshouse in 160 cm length tubes on a set of spring wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) genotypes under contrasting water regimes (1) to assess genotypic variability in root...
Book
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(ES) En la región de Aysén, el impacto de las actividades humanas ha sido muy reciente en comparación con otras regiones de Chile y el mundo. En lo que respecta a los ecosistemas terrestres, hasta hace menos de un siglo dominaban el paisaje extensos bosques templados que apenas habían sido intervenidos por habitantes indígenas (Tehuelches -Aonikenk...
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The agroforestry activity of central Chile is developed under Mediterranean climate, characterized by long periods of water deficit conditions, particularly on hillsides with degraded and compacted soils. The objective of this study was to assess the effect of two soil and water conservation techniques on soil water content (SWC) and in plant growt...
Article
Annual legume pastures exhibit high resilience and productivity in Mediterranean climate regions and can be an important source of nitrogen (N) for temperate cereals in integrated livestock production systems. This work seeks to evaluate the inputs of N fixed by annual legume mixtures (composed of 3–4 species and cultivars) grown for one, two or th...
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Wheat plants growing under Mediterranean rain-fed conditions are exposed to water deficit, particularly during the grain filling period, and this can lead to a strong reduction in grain yield (GY). This study examines the effects of water deficit after during the grain filling period on photosynthetic and water-use efficiencies at the leaf and whol...
Article
Lucerne (alfalfa, Medicago sativa L.) is grown extensively worldwide owing to its high forage biomass production and nutritional value. Although this crop is characterised as being tolerant to drought, its production and persistence are affected by water stress. Selection of genotypes of high yield potential and persistence after a long period of d...
Chapter
Photosynthesis is a fundamental process for life, converting solar energy into chemical energy. This then powers the assimilation of carbon into organic compounds, like carbohydrates, which are used to synthesize other compounds such as organic acids, amino acids and lipids to form the basic components for biomass accumulation. Water-soluble carboh...
Conference Paper
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High-throughput phenotyping techniques can aid plant breeders to increase the efficiency of selection and are needed for implementing predictive models and genome wide association studies. The objective of this study was to evaluate the phenotypic relationship among multiple vegetation indices (VIs) and drought tolerance in an alfalfa diversity pan...
Article
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In most legume nodules, the di-nitrogen (N2)-fixing rhizobia are present as organelle-like structures inside their root host cells. Many processes operate and interact within the symbiotic relationship between plants and nodules, including nitrogen (N)/carbon (C) metabolisms, oxygen flow through nodules, oxidative stress, and phosphorous (P) levels...
Article
Drought is likely the main abiotic stress that affects wheat yield. The identification of drought-tolerant genotypes represents an effective way of dealing with the continuous decrease in water resources as well as the increase in world population. The aim of this study was to identify single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) associated with drought t...
Article
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In Chile, durum wheat is cultivated in high-yielding Mediterranean environments, therefore breeding programs have selected cultivars with high yield potential in addition to grain quality. The genetic progress in grain yield (GY) between 1964 and 2010 was 72.8 kg ha−1 per year. GY showed a positive and significant correlation with days to heading,...
Article
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Canopy temperature (Tc) by thermal imaging is a useful tool to study plant water status and estimate other crop traits. This work seeks to estimate grain yield (GY) and carbon discrimination (∆ 13 C) from stress degree day (SDD = Tc − air temperature, Ta), considering the effect of a number of environmental variables such as the averages of the max...
Article
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The world’s five Mediterranean-climate regions (MCRs) share unique climatic regimes of mild, wet winters and warm and dry summers. Agriculture in these regions is threatened by increases in the occurrence of drought and high temperature events associated with climate change (CC). In this review we analyze what would be the effects of CC on crops (i...
Article
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In Mediterranean climates soil water deficit occurs mainly during the spring and summer, having a great impact on cereal productivity. While previous studies have indicated that the grain yield (GY) of triticale is usually higher than bread wheat (Triticum aestivum L.), comparatively little is known about the performance of these crops under water-...
Article
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To overcome the environmental changes occurring now and predicted for the future, it is essential that fruit breeders develop cultivars with better physiological performance. During the last few decades, high-throughput plant phenotyping and phenomics have been developed primarily in cereal breeding programs. In this study, plant reflectance, at th...
Article
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Plant traits such as phenological development, growth rate, stress tolerance and seeds production may play an important role in the process of acclimatisation to new environments for introduced plants. Experiments that distinguish phenotypic plasticity from ecotypic differentiation would allow an understanding of the role of plant traits in the inv...
Article
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Aquaporins (AQPs) are transmembrane proteins essential for controlling the flow of water and other molecules required for development and stress tolerance in plants, including important crop species such as wheat (Triticum aestivum). In this study, we utilized a genomic approach for analyzing the information about AQPs available in public databases...
Book
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As a consequence of the global climate change, both the reduction on yield potential and the available surface area of cultivated species will compromise the production of food needed for a constant growing population. There is consensus about the significant gap between world food consumption projected for the coming decades and the expected crop...
Article
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Scientists have been interested in many topics driven by biological invasions, such as shifts in the area of distribution of plant species and rapid evolution. Invasiveness of exotic plant species depends on variations on morphological and reproductive traits potentially associated with reproductive fitness and dispersal ability, which are expected...
Article
Aims Successful invasive plants are often assumed to display significant levels of phenotypic plasticity. Three possible strategies by which phenotypic plasticity may allow invasive plant species to thrive in changing environments have been suggested: (i) via plasticity in morphological or physiological traits, invasive plants are able to maintain...
Article
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The genetic and physiological mechanisms underlying the relationship between water-soluble carbohydrates (WSC) and water stress tolerance are scarcely known. This study aimed to evaluate the main WSC in stems, and the expression of genes involved in fructan metabolism in wheat genotypes growing in a glasshouse with water stress (WS; 50% field capac...
Article
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Resumo Barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) is considered a good genetic model for evaluating mechanisms of drought tolerance, and it is the most important threat to crop production worldwide. This study aimed to identify single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) associated with agronomic, morphological and physiological traits in a population of 137 recombin...
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Dispersal and reproductive traits of successful plant invaders are expected to undergo strong selection during biological invasions. Numerous Asteraceae are invasive and display dimorphic fruits within a single flower head, resulting in differential dispersal pathways - wind-dispersed fruits vs. non-dispersing fruits. We explored ecotypic different...
Article
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Legumes in the genus Adesmia are wild species with forage and medicinal potential. Their nitrogen fixation efficiency depends on their association with soil bacteria known as rhizobia. The aim of this work was to assess the diversity and symbiotic effectiveness of root nodule bacteria from Adesmia boronioides, Adesmia emarginata and Adesmia tenella...
Article
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Phenotyping, via remote and proximal sensing techniques, of the agronomic and physiological traits associated with yield potential and drought adaptation could contribute to improvements in breeding programs. In the present study, 384 genotypes of wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) were tested under fully irrigated (FI) and water stress (WS) conditions....
Article
The potential for alfalfa to be a valuable rainfed pasture option that can be used to increase livestock and crop production in central-south Chile is demonstrated for the first time. The persistence, productivity and water use efficiency of alfalfa (Medicago sativa) cultivars was evaluated at four sites in dryland Mediterranean environments of Chi...
Article
Invasion by exotic species in Mediterranean grasslands has determined assembly patterns of native and introduced species, knowledge of which provides information on the ecological processes underlying these novel communities. We considered grasslands from Spain and Chile. For each country we considered the whole grassland community and we split spe...
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Background Whole-genome genotyping techniques like Genotyping-by-sequencing (GBS) are being used for genetic studies such as Genome-Wide Association (GWAS) and Genomewide Selection (GS), where different strategies for imputation have been developed. Nevertheless, imputation error may lead to poor performance (i.e. smaller power or higher false posi...
Article
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Different physiological traits have been proposed as key traits associated with yield potential as well as performance under water stress. The aim of this paper is to examine the genotypic variability of leaf chlorophyll, stem water-soluble carbohydrate content and carbon isotope discrimination (Δ13C), and their relationship with grain yield (GY) a...
Article
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This study identified single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers associated with fifteen complex traits in a breeding population of barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) consisting of 137 recombinant chromosome substitution lines (RCSL), evaluated under contrasting water availability conditions in the Mediterranean climatic region of central Chile. Given t...
Article
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The phytoextraction process implies the use of plants to promote the elimination of metal contaminants in the soil. In fact, metal-accumulating plants are planted or transplanted in metal-contaminated soil and cultivated in accordance with established agricultural practices. The objective of the present study was to evaluate the productivity and Cd...
Article
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Aims. Alien species are commonly considered as harmful weeds capable of decreasing native biodiversity and threatening ecosystems. Despite this assumption, little is known about the long-term patterns of the native-alien relationships associated with human disturbed managed landscapes. The present study aims to elucidate the community dynamics asso...
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Despite their ecological, economic and social importance, grasslands in areas with Mediterranean climates continue to receive limited scientific, political and media attention. The main objectives of this review are to compare and contrast dryland grasslands in the ‘Old World’ regions of the Mediterranean basin (southern Europe, western Asia and No...
Article
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In dryland Mediterranean environments, the productivity of annual legumes is low during autumn and winter, with plant senescence typically beginning by the middle of spring because of low soil water availability. Therefore, the use of deep-rooted perennial legumes may provide an alternative to annual legumes in regions with a soil moisture deficit....
Article
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AimMost studies on invasibility consider the characteristics of the habitats colonized. However, the success of the establishment of exotic species can be conditioned by the characteristics of the donor communities. In this study, we analyse the extent to which the distribution of exotic herbaceous species in Chile is conditioned either by the clim...
Article
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The absorption and partitioning of N is determined by its availability and demand during the various phenological stages of the crop. In two experiments conducted in rainfed areas of the Mediterranean climate region of central Chile, legume-wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) rotations were compared to oat (Avena sativa L.)-wheat systems (with and without...
Article
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Plant breeding based on grain yield (GY) is an expensive and time-consuming method, so new indirect estimation techniques to evaluate the performance of crops represent an alternative method to improve grain yield. The present study evaluated the ability of canopy reflectance spectroscopy at the range from 350 to 2500 nm to predict GY in a large pa...
Article
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Association mapping has been proposed to identify polymorphisms involved in phenotypic variations and may prove useful in identifying interesting alleles for breeding purposes. Using this approach, a total of 382 cultivars and advanced lines of spring wheat obtained from three breeding programs (Chile, Uruguay and CIMMYT) were evaluated for plant h...
Chapter
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Introducción En Chile, las zonas de clima mediterráneo se caracterizan por suelos altamente erosionados. En estas condiciones la disponibilidad hídrica para especies leñosas es un factor clave en la sobrevivencia, crecimiento y establecimiento exitoso de las especies arbóreas. El uso de sistemas conservacionistas que mitiguen la erosión hídrica per...
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El catalogo forma parte de la tesis doctoral `Bases ecológicas para implementar un sistema de uso silvopastoral en la región patagónica de Aysén, Chile’. Se presentan las especies registradas y una caracterización ecológica de las especies herbáceas realizada mediante una metodología objetiva de fácil aplicación. La información es relevante para ot...
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An approach to derive relationships for defining land degradation and desertification risk and developing appropriate tools for assessing the effectiveness of the various land management practices using indicators is presented in the present paper. In order to investigate which indicators are most effective in assessing the level of desertification...