Sorghum is one of the main cereal crops, its consumption is large, since it provides grain, fiber and biofuel. Likewise, its genome, with only 10 diploid chromosomes, makes it an attractive model for research and genetic improvement. Sorghum is the most studied C4 plant of its genus; several lines have been developed under three main characteristics: grain, forage and sugar biomass. Compared to other crops, sweet sorghum possesses high levels of highly fermentable sugars in the stem. Also, it has the ability of producing high production yields in marginal lands. These characteristics make it and attractive crop for the generation of biofuels. Molecular markers associated to several resistances and tolerances to biotic and abiotic factors have been described in literature. These allow the development of high-density linkage maps, which, along with the rising availability of sorghum genomes, will accelerate the identification of markers and the integration of the complete genome sequence. This will facilitate the selection of traits related to biofuels and the marker-assisted genetic improvement. Most of the information presented in this review is focused in Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench. However, from the bioenergetics perspective, it is limited to sweet sorghum, which represents a promising opportunity for further studies.
Part of the book: Biotechnological Applications of Biomass