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Advances and Promises of Epigenetics for Forest Trees

Research output: Contribution to Journal/MagazineReview articlepeer-review

  • Joana Amaral
  • Zoé Ribeyre
  • Julien Vigneaud
  • Mamadou Dia Sow
  • Régis Fichot
  • Christian Messier
  • Gloria Pinto
  • Philippe Nolet
  • Stéphane Maury
Article number976
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>10/09/2020
Issue number9
Number of pages21
Publication StatusPublished
<mark>Original language</mark>English


The importance of tree genetic variability in the ability of forests to respond and adapt to environmental changes is crucial in forest management and conservation. Along with genetics, recent advances have highlighted “epigenetics” as an emerging and promising field of research for the understanding of tree phenotypic plasticity and adaptive responses. In this paper, we review recent advances in this emerging field and their potential applications for tree researchers and breeders, as well as for forest managers. First, we present the basics of epigenetics in plants before discussing its potential for trees. We then propose a bibliometric and overview of the literature on epigenetics in trees, including recent advances on tree priming. Lastly, we outline the promises of epigenetics for forest research and management, along with current gaps and future challenges. Research in epigenetics could use highly diverse paths to help forests adapt to global change by eliciting different innovative silvicultural approaches for natural- and artificial-based forest management.