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Review article2022Peer reviewed

Towards understanding the biological foundations of perenniality

Li, Zheng; Lathe, Rahul S.; Li, Jinping; He, Hong; Bhalerao, Rishikesh P.


Perennial life cycles enable plants to have remarkably long lifespans, as exemplified by trees that can live for thousands of years. For this, they require sophisticated regulatory networks that sense environmental changes and initiate adaptive responses in their growth patterns. Recent research has gradually elucidated fundamental mechanisms underlying the perennial life cycle. Intriguingly, several conserved components of the floral transition pathway in annuals such as Arabidopsis thaliana also participate in these regulatory mechanisms underpinning perenniality. Here, we provide an overview of perennials' physiological features and summarise their recently discovered molecular foundations. We also highlight the importance of deepening our understanding of perenniality in the development of perennial grain crops, which are promising elements of future sustainable agriculture.

Published in

Trends in Plant Science
2022, Volume: 27, number: 1, pages: 56-68