About this Research Topic
Forests are a key element as we face the challenge of climate change since they help mitigate the impact of excess CO2. However, trees are also being affected by climate change, mainly due to changes in the frequency and extremes of temperatures, drought, salinity, and the increased incidence of pathogens and insect pests. Therefore, as long-living organisms, trees need to be resilient to environmental variability throughout their lives, and populations must adapt to changing climates.
Trees are also a source of natural renewable material that can provide a sustainable alternative to fossil fuels and products in the future. Trees are drivers of the bioeconomy in various countries, as wood can be employed for energy, production of cellulose for the pulp and paper industry, and the development of new materials being made of the three main components of wood, namely cellulose, lignin, and hemicelluloses. In addition, the use of wood for high-story buildings, furniture, and novel uses, such as in cars, is anticipated to increase. For this reason, it is crucial to gain a better understanding of how trees interact with environmental factors.
This Research Topic aims to collect physiological, biochemical, biological, and genetic studies to improve our understanding of the mechanisms that enable forests to tolerate and resist abiotic and biotic stressors. In future, this information will inform breeding and genetic engineering efforts to improve sustainable wood production for an emerging bioeconomy, as well as promote forest health and the multitude of ecosystem services they provide.
Physiological, biochemical and genetic studies highlighting regulatory networks involved in environmental tolerance, or stress responses, of forest trees are welcomed in the following areas:
• Abiotic stress
• Adaptation to changing climate
• Interaction with insects and wildlife
• Tree-endophyte roles in stress tolerance and sustainable biomass production
• The interactions between biotic and abiotic stress
• Genetic improvement (breeding or editing/transgenic) for resistance/tolerance
An additional aim is to present global views on this topic and to encourage women, minority, and early-career researchers to contribute to this Research Topic.
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.