Biotech Updates

Overexpression of Rice Gene ADI1 Enhances Naphthalene Tolerance in Arabidopsis

January 13, 2016

Naphthalene is assumed to contribute to human cancer risk, making naphthalene clean up crucial. Phytoremediation is an efficient technology to clean up contaminants. While no plant gene has been discovered that can efficiently degrade naphthalene, the pathway for bacterial degradation of naphthalene has been well investigated.

Xiao-Yan Fu and colleagues from Shanghai Academy of Agricultural Sciences, overexpressed a rice gene, ADI1, into Arabidopsis thaliana. The ADI1 codes for ferredoxin, a key player in naphthalene degradation. The transgenic Arabidopsis plants then showed enhanced tolerance and degradation efficiency of naphthalene.

Transgenic plants assimilated naphthalene from the culture media faster and removed more of this substance. The results suggest that breeding plants with overexpressed ADI1 gene is an effective strategy to degrade naphthalene in the environment.

For more information, read the article on Plant Cell Reports.