Photosynthesis, enzyme activities and metabolite pools associated with primary carbon metabolism in leaves were studied in O. grandiglumis and O. alta (wild relatives of rice which produce high biomass) versus O. sativa (a japonica cultivar and a indica-japonica hybrid) to assess their potential for identifying traits which might be utilized to enhance rice productivity. The wild relatives had higher rates of photosynthesis on a fresh weight basis, and higher water use efficiency than the O. sativa lines. There were no striking differences in activities of a number of key enzymes in carbon and nitrogen metabolism between the wild relatives and cultivated rice lines. Along with higher rates of photosynthesis on a fresh weight basis, the leaves of the two wild species had higher nitrate content, higher levels of starch, glucose and fructose, and higher levels of organic acids (malate, succinate and acetate), compared to the O. sativa lines. The results suggested that O. grandiglumis and O. alta have differences in physiology and primary metabolism which might be exploited to improve growth and productivity of cultivated rice.
Sung, J., Lee, S., Chung, J. W., Edwards, G., Ryu, H., & Kim, T. (2017). Photosynthesis, Metabolite Composition and Anatomical Structure of Oryza sativa and Two Wild Relatives, O. grandiglumis and O. alta. Rice Science, 24(4), 218–227. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.rsci.2017.04.002