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Jorge Fernando Pereira, Gilberto Rocca da Cunha and Edina Regina Moresco

Abstract: Improving rainfed wheat cultivation in central Brazil, where the Cerrado
biome (Brazilian savanna) is predominant, remains a bottleneck for future
increases in domestic wheat production. In the Cerrado, the limited water availability
during the wheat-growing season is an obstacle to increase wheat yield.
To address this issue, the physiological and molecular drought response of wheat
and the environmental conditions of this region must be better understood. In
this review, we characterized the impact of drought on rainfed wheat production
in the Cerrado. Based on the peculiarities of this environment, we suggest that
certain traits should be prioritized in selection. These traits and their molecular
basis are important to raise wheat yields in the Cerrado and also to improve
food security in Brazil, one of the top wheat-importing countries in the world.

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