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Crop Biotech Update

Isolation and Expression of Antimicrobial Camel Lactoferrin (cLf) Gene in Tobacco

October 15, 2014

Plants have the ability to produce mammalian functional proteins with therapeutic activity, including lactoferrin, a valuable protein commonly found in milk and is important in many physiological processes such as iron transfer and immune response. Tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum) is the main plant system applied for green bioreactors since it is a leafy plant with high leaf biomass and high levels of soluble proteins.

Shiraz University's Ali Niazi, together with his team, isolated the camel's (Camelus dromedarius) lactoferrin gene (cLf) and expressed it in Nicotiana tobaccum cv. Xanthi. Analysis showed that the recombinant camel lactoferrin gene (cLf) was expressed in transgenic tobacco. Tests on protein extract from the transgenic tobacco leaves exhibited antimicrobial activity.

Lactoferrin expression in plants provides a suitable system for large-scale production of this protein. Furthermore, it has been demonstrated that lactoferrin expression in plants confers resistance to plant diseases.

For further information on the study, read the full article here: http://www.pomics.com/niazi_7_5_2014_298_307.pdf