Crop Biotech Update

Scientists Find Candidate Gene for Improving Potassium Deficiency Tolerance in Rice

June 20, 2018

Peroxiredoxins (Prxs) have been implicated in the toxic reduction and intracellular concentration regulation of hydrogen peroxide. In Arabidopsis thaliana, the At2-CysPrxB gene is essential in maintaining the water-water cycle for proper hydrogen peroxide scavenging.

While 2-Cys Prxs have been extensively studied in Arabidopsis thaliana, the function of 2-Cys Prxs in rice is unclear. Xiaohui Mao from Fujian Agriculture and Forestry University in China led a team of researchers to investigate the rice homologue of At2-CysPrxB, OsPRX2, and its effect on Potassium deficiency tolerance in rice.

Analysis found that OsPRX2 was localized in the chloroplast. Overexpression of OsPRX2 caused enhanced potassium-deficiency tolerance, whereas CRISPR-knockout of OsPRX2 lead to serious defects in leaves and stomatal opening under the potassium- deficient conditions.

These results confirm the OsPRX2 is a potential target for engineering plants with improved tolerance to potassium deficiency.

For more information on this study, read the article in Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications.