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Crop Biotech Update

Researchers Test C and N Partitioning Bt Rice under Varying N Treatments

April 3, 2019

Scientists from Huazhong Agricultural University assessed the reaction of Bt and non-Bt rice to various levels of nitrogen. They used T2A-1 (Bt rice variety) inserted with Cry2A* protein and observed the nitrogen (N) and carbon (C) metabolisms in the plants. The results are published in Scientific Reports.

The total N accumulation showed no statistical difference between the Bt and non-Bt rice plants. However, the nitrogen contents in various parts of rice plant were significantly different between Bt and non-Bt rice plants, especially on the leaf and spike. The nitrogen in the leaves of Bt rice was found to be far more than that of the non-Bt counterpart, while the nitrogen in the spike of Bt rice was less than that of the non-Bt plants. The non-Bt plants also assimilated more C than Bt rice, but the distribution proportion of C in leaf, stem, and spike of Bt and non-Bt rice were both in equal ratio.

The researchers also reported that the number of differentially expressed protein with N deficiency treatment was almost double of that exposed to normal N levels. This may imply that insertion of Cry2A* in rice could affect C and N allocation and related metabolisms, particularly in low N environment.

For more details, read the article in Scientific Reports.