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Crop Biotech Update

NHX Transporters from Jerusalem Artichoke Improves Salinity Tolerance in Rice

September 27, 2017

The NHX-type cation transporters in plants have been shown to mediate cation exchange for salinity tolerance and potassium homoeostasis. Yang Zeng of Nanjing Agricultural University in China identified and characterized two NHX homologs, HtNHX1 and HtNHX2, from an infertile and salinity tolerant Jerusalem artichoke (Helianthus tuberosus).

The two genes were then cloned and expressed separately in rice cultivars. Both hydroponics and soil culture experiments showed that the expression of HtNHX1 or HtNHX2 improved the rice tolerance to salinity. Moreover, expression of HtNHX2 increased rice grain yield, harvest index, total nutrient uptake under potassium-limited, salt-stress or general nutrient deficiency conditions.

The results provide a novel insight into NHX transporters function in plant mineral nutrition.

For more information on this study, read the article in Plant Biotechnology Journal.