Crop Biotech Update

CmHSFA4 Positively Regulates Salt Stress Tolerance in Transgenic Chrysanthemum

January 24, 2018

Sodium toxicity caused by soil salt stress can hamper plant growth. Fei Li of Nanjing Agricultural University in China, together with a team of researchers, studied the chrysanthemum (Dendranthema grandiflora) gene CmHSFA4 and its role in salt stress tolerance.

The team found that the gene was inducible by salt stress and is found mostly in the nucleus. They then developed transgenic chrysanthemum overexpressing CmHSFA4 for further analysis of the gene. The transgenics displayed enhanced tolerance to salt stress. The enhanced tolerance was a result of limited build up of sodium ions and constant levels of potassium in the plants. Further analysis revealed that these were done by upregulation of ion transporters, CmSOS1 and CmHKT2.

These results suggest that CmHSFA4 can confer salinity tolerance in chrysanthemum by regulating the levels of sodium and potassium ions in plants.

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