Gene Expression During Drought Determined in Papaya

Papaya is a fruit crop rich in nutrients and papain, a digestive enzyme widely used in industrial applications. It confers drought tolerance, a trait that has not been investigated in the fruit crop. Researcher Luis Carlos Rodriguez-Zapata from Yucatan Center for Scientific Research, Mexico and colleagues studied the drought tolerance mechanism in papaya through RNA expression analysis.

The researchers used Illumina-Seq to analyze the RNA expression in papaya tissues, such as leaves, sap, and roots under well-watered and drought stress conditions. Results include differentially expressed genes during the experimental conditions and root and leaf transcription factors that respond during drought stress. In particular, moderate drought stress caused increased expression of genes related to cell cycle and DNA repair (leaves and sap) and genes related to abiotic stress, hormone signalling, sucrose metabolism, and suberin synthesis (roots). Severe drought stress caused increased expression of genes related to abiotic stress, hormone signalling, and oxidation-reduction. These findings will help researchers improve papaya in the future.

For more information, read the article in Scientific Reports.


 

This article is part of the Crop Biotech Update, a weekly summary of world developments in agri-biotech for developing countries, produced by the Global Knowledge Center on Crop Biotechnology, International Service for the Aquisition of Agri-Biotech Applications SEAsiaCenter (ISAAA)

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