Biotech Updates

Expression of ADA in Biotech Tobacco Plants

January 23, 2013

Adenosine diaminase deficiency is a heritable disorder caused by the absence of adenosine deaminase (ADA), an important enzyme in purine salvage pathway. The absence of ADA results in a dysfunctional immune system due to the build-up of toxic metabolites. This led Sanjeewa Singhabahu and colleagues at University of East London to produce functional human ADA in tobacco plants. They inserted a human ADA cDNA into a plant expression vector and transformed the tobacco plants through Agrobacterium-mediated transformation.

Analyses confirmed the integration of the construct into the plant nuclear genome and expression of the recombinant ADA in transgenic tobacco leaves. Further analysis have revealed that the size of the recombinant ADA is similar with the human ADA. ADA-specific activities of between 0.001 and 0.003 units per mg total soluble protein were measured in crude extracts collected from transgenic tobacco plant leaves.

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