Biotech Updates

Scientists Develop High Oleic Soybean By Targeted Mutagenesis

May 28, 2014

Scientists from Cellectis reported the generation of high oleic soybean in the Journal of Plant Biotechnology. The high oleic soybean line was engineered through targeted gene editing of 4 alleles of two fatty acid desaturase genes (FAD2-1A and FAD2-1B).

Artificial DNA-cutting enzymes were engineered to find and slice conserved DNA sequences in both genes. Four out of 19 soybean lines expressing the enzyme exhibited changes in FAD2-1A and FAD2-1B as manifested in the DNA extracted from the leaf tissue, and 3 of those 4 lines transferred heritable FAD2-1 mutations to the following generation.

Plants with mutations in the both genes showed alterations in the fatty acid profile, where oleic acid raised from 20 to 80 percent and linoleic acid decreased from 50 to below 4 percent. Mutant plants carried only the targeted mutations and the artificial enzymes were not detected.

The results of the study showed that artificial DNA-cutting enzymes can be used to achieve targeted gene modification to improve crops.

Read more about the study at and