Tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) is the second most important vegetable crop globally, after potato, with about 100 million tons fresh fruit being grown on 3.7 million hectares, and is of great importance in the human diet due to the large amount of fruit consumed. They provide an important dietary source of vitamins and minerals, such as K, Fe and Ca, and are known for the large number of health promoting secondary metabolites, including the carotenoid and flavonoid pigments.
Tomato commercial production and breeding is supported by a long history of research that has led to the identification of regions of the tomato genome that control a host of important traits including disease resistance, yield and fruit quality. The first tomato genome was sequenced a decade ago and the sequence is now in its fifth iteration with 100 s of genome sequences from a wide spectrum of wild species crop relatives and cultivated varieties. The diploid nature of tomato, genomic resources and a wide range of single gene mutants make it an excellent model plant to study dicot crop species and especially those with fleshy fruits.
This special collection brings together a range of papers to explore the latest developments and scientific insights in tomato molecular biology. The papers highlight a broad range of exciting discoveries, technology platforms and resources that illustrate the tremendous and growing significance of tomato as an experimental model, and socially important crop. The future for tomato research remains bright!
Prof. Graham B. Seymour
School of Biosciences, Division of Plant and Crop Science, University of Nottingham, Loughborough Leics LE12 5RD, UK
Prof. Jocelyn KC Rose
School of Integrative Plant Science, Cornell University, 331 Emerson Hall, Ithaca, NY 14853
Articles will undergo all of the journal's standard peer review and editorial processes outlined in its submission guidelines.