Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New genetic tool helps improve rice

Date:
August 19, 2010
Source:
USDA/Agricultural Research Service
Summary:
Scientists have developed a new tool for improving the expression of desirable genes in rice in parts of the plant where the results will do the most good.

ARS geneticist Roger Thilmony has found that the LP2 gene promoter can be used to direct other introduced genes to express beneficial traits in specific plant tissues without affecting other parts of the plants such as the rice grains.
Credit: Photo by David Nance

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) scientists have developed a new tool for improving the expression of desirable genes in rice in parts of the plant where the results will do the most good.

Related Articles


Roger Thilmony, a geneticist with USDA's Agricultural Research Service (ARS), has shown that the LP2 gene promoter can be used to direct other introduced genes to express beneficial traits in specific plant tissues without the potential for causing unintended consequences. Thilmony works at the ARS Crop Improvement and Utilization Research Unit in Albany, Calif. ARS is USDA's principal intramural scientific research agency.

Rice is under constant threat from pathogens such as rice blast, a fungus found in fields worldwide, and sheath blight, a continuing threat to U.S. growers. Scientists who develop disease-resistant varieties often find that introducing a gene may prevent disease in one part of the plant, but also may reduce seed quality or produce other "side effects" because the gene is expressed throughout the plant. Tissue-specific promoters, such as LP2, are segments of genes that can direct the activity of introduced genes only to parts of the plant where the beneficial traits are needed.

Thilmony and his ARS colleagues Mara Guttman, James Thomson and Ann Blechl found that the gene they named LP2 is consistently expressed in green tissues. In experiments, they fused the LP2 promoter with a "reporter gene" known to produce a specific enzyme, and inserted that fused DNA package into seven lines of rice to see where the enzyme would be produced.

They found that the LP2 promoter steered expression of the reporter gene specifically to green tissues where photosynthesis occurs. The reporter gene enzyme activity was highest in the leaves, and nearly undetectable in the roots, seeds and flower parts.

The LP2 promoter could be used to improve varieties of rice, barley and wheat and could aid in the development of biofuel crops, in which scientists need to control leaf traits without affecting other tissues, according to Thilmony.

The researchers published their work in Plant Biotechnology Journal and have filed a provisional patent on use of the LP2 promoter.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by USDA/Agricultural Research Service. The original article was written by Dennis O'Brien. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

USDA/Agricultural Research Service. "New genetic tool helps improve rice." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 19 August 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/08/100819112120.htm>.
USDA/Agricultural Research Service. (2010, August 19). New genetic tool helps improve rice. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 18, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/08/100819112120.htm
USDA/Agricultural Research Service. "New genetic tool helps improve rice." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/08/100819112120.htm (accessed December 18, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Plants & Animals News

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Navy Unveils Robot Fish

Navy Unveils Robot Fish

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Dec. 18, 2014) The U.S. Navy unveils an underwater device that mimics the movement of a fish. Tara Cleary reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Kids Die While Under Protective Services

Kids Die While Under Protective Services

AP (Dec. 18, 2014) As part of a six-month investigation of child maltreatment deaths, the AP found that hundreds of deaths from horrific abuse and neglect could have been prevented. AP's Haven Daley reports. (Dec. 18) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
When You Lose Weight, This Is Where The Fat Goes

When You Lose Weight, This Is Where The Fat Goes

Newsy (Dec. 17, 2014) Can fat disappear into thin air? New research finds that during weight loss, over 80 percent of a person's fat molecules escape through the lungs. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Hottest Food Trends for 2015

The Hottest Food Trends for 2015

Buzz60 (Dec. 17, 2014) Urbanspoon predicts whicg food trends will dominate the culinary scene in 2015. Mara Montalbano (@maramontalbano) has the story. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins