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Genard M.,UR1115 | Quilot-Turion B.,French National Institute for Agricultural Research | Sidi M.M.O.,UR1115 | Kadrani A.,UR1115 | And 2 more authors.
Acta Horticulturae | Year: 2015

This work aimed at investigating the heuristic potential of a process-based model of peach fruit expressing seasonal changes in several quality attributes of fruit (e.g., size, percentages of flesh, water, sugar and acid contents) and fruit sensitivity to brown rot (skin density of cracks). Firstly, we showed that this "Virtual Fruit" could be used to analyze the impact of a single mutation which decreased the fruit's requirement for carbon on peach fruit behavior. The mutation triggered large effects on several variables of the fruit development model (growth, respiration and metabolism) and delayed the fruit developmental rate. Such a virtual approach could lead to new ways of exploring the impact of mutations, or naturally occurring genetic variations, in silico, under different environmental conditions. Secondly, we illustrated how the "Virtual Fruit" could be possibly used to design peach ideotypes with high fruit mass and sweetness and low skin density of cracks. Since these traits are antagonists, we treated this design as a multi-objective optimization problem. An evolutionary algorithm was applied to solve this multi-objective optimization problem based on the "Virtual Fruit". The optimized variables were six genetic parameters of the "Virtual Fruit". This optimization procedure provided a large diversity of solutions (ideotypes). Ideotypes with low fruit mass had a high sweetness and low skin density of cracks. In a current breeding scheme, fruit mass would be the only criterion, but alternative schemes could be considered for the future, favoring organoleptic quality or environment friendly practices, or more generally, aiming at finding acceptable trade-offs between several criteria. In this case, modelling and model-based optimization would be helpful. Source


Quilot-Turion B.,French National Institute for Agricultural Research | Ould-Sidi M.-M.,UR1115 | Kadrani A.,UR1115 | Hilgert N.,Montpellier SupAgro | And 2 more authors.
European Journal of Agronomy | Year: 2012

Designing sustainable production systems that are respectful of the environment and produce safe food of quality is a challenge for the future. A critical step is to find the best combinations of genetic resources and cultural practices adapted to target environments. The objective of this work is to illustrate how an ecophysiological process-based simulation model could be possibly used to design genotypes and to propose innovative production systems, by applying a methodology of optimization.As example, we studied the peach-brown rot system and used the 'Virtual Fruit', a process-based model that has been extensively tested, to perform virtual experiments. The challenge was to optimize the trade-off between antagonistic criteria of major importance for both fruit quality (increasing fruit mass and sweetness) and sensitivity to brown rot (decreasing skin density of cracks) in four different cultural scenarios. A multiobjective evolutionary algorithm, namely NSGA-II, was applied to solve this multiobjective optimization problem based on the 'Virtual Fruit'. The optimized variables were six parameters of the 'Virtual Fruit', selected on the basis of a sensitivity analysis.This optimization method provided a large diversity of solutions among which the decision-maker can choose the best suited trade-off between criteria according to a particular objective. Most of the optimized solutions were distributed along Pareto fronts suggesting a good convergence of the algorithm. Moreover, it also provided some solutions located in non-crowded zones which constitute some original alternatives for the final decision-maker.The results confirmed the strong antagonism between the criteria considered. Large fruits had a weak sweetness and high crack density and for a given mass, those with improved sweetness had higher crack density. In a current breeding scheme, fruit mass would be the only criteria considered but alternative schemes could be considered for future, favouring organoleptic quality or environment friendly practices. In those cases, some interesting optimized solutions were identified.The work described in this paper supports that multiobjective evolutionary algorithms should be used to optimize parameters of process-based models and help identifying trade-off in complex systems. The use of the 'Virtual Fruit' to design sustainable production systems combining genotypes and innovative practices is further discussed. © 2011 Elsevier B.V. Source

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