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Journal of Integrative Agriculture  2017, Vol. 16 Issue (06): 1236-1243    DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(15)61181-9
Section 3: Improvement of energy crops for arid and semi-lands Advanced Online Publication | Current Issue | Archive | Adv Search |
Sweet sorghum and Miscanthus: Two potential dedicated bioenergy crops in China
HU Shi-wei1, 2, WU Lei-ming1, 2, Staffan Persson2, 3, PENG Liang-cai1, 2, FENG Sheng-qiu1, 2

1 National Key Laboratory of Crop Genetic Improvement/National Centre of Plant Gene Research, Huazhong Agricultural University, Wuhan 430070, P.R.China

2 Biomass and Bioenergy Research Centre, College of Plant Science and Technology, Huazhong Agricultural University, Wuhan 430070, P.R.China

3 ARC Centre of Excellence in Plant Cell Walls, School of Botany, University of Melbourne, Parkcille 3010, Australia

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Abstract  Among the potential non-food energy crops, the sugar-rich C4 grass sweet sorghum and the biomass-rich Miscanthus are increasingly considered as two leading candidates.  Here, we outline the biological traits of these energy crops for large-scale production in China.  We also review recent progress on understanding of plant cell wall composition and wall polymer features of both plant species from large populations that affect both biomass enzymatic digestibility and ethanol conversion rates under various pretreatment conditions.  We finally propose genetic approaches to enhance biomass production, enzymatic digestibility and sugar-ethanol conversion efficiency of the energy crops.
Keywords:  sweet sorghum      Miscanthus      bioenergy crops      biofuels      plant cell wall      biomass saccharification      ethanol conversion  
Received: 15 April 2015   Accepted: 08 June 2017
CLC Number: 



This work was supported by grants from the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities Project , China (2013QC042), the Fundamental Research Funds for the 111 Project of Ministry of Education of China (B08032), and the Starting Foundation for Changjiang Scholars Program of Ministry of Education of China (52204-14004).

Corresponding Authors:  FENG Sheng-qiu, Tel: +86-27-87281765, Fax: +86-27-87280066, E-mail:    

Cite this article: 

HU Shi-wei, WU Lei-ming, Staffan Persson, PENG Liang-cai, FENG Sheng-qiu. 2017. Sweet sorghum and Miscanthus: Two potential dedicated bioenergy crops in China. Journal of Integrative Agriculture, 16(06): 1236-1243.

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