Researchers Discover Core Set of Genes for Plant-Fungal SymbiosisJanuary 20, 2016
Land plants get a large portion of their mineral nutrients through their relationship with soil fungi called arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) symbiosis. Despite decades of research, many of the genes required to form this relationship remain elusive. A new study conducted by researchers at the Boyce Thompson Institute (BTI) has uncovered genes that plants use to form symbiotic relationships with fungi.
With the widely available genome sequences, the researchers were able to compare 50 plant genomes to identify 138 genes shared exclusively by plants capable of AM symbiosis. Armando Bravo, a BTI postdoctoral scientist worked with bioinformatics analyst Thomas York to compare the genome sequences of 34 plant species that can form symbiosis with 16 plants that cannot. Then they picked out the genes that are found only in plants that form AM symbiosis and arrived at just 138 genes. Fifteen of these were already known to play a role in AM symbiosis and Bravo tested the accuracy of seven of the unknown genes in the group by growing barrel medic with mutations in those genes and examining their ability to form a successful symbiosis. Mutations in six of these genes resulted in a faulty interaction.
Almost all staple crops form AM symbioses, and optimizing this interaction through crop breeding could improve yield and reduce the need for fertilizers.
For more details, read the news release at the BTI website.
Biotech Updates is a weekly newsletter of ISAAA, a not-for-profit organization. It is distributed for free to over 22,000 subscribers worldwide to inform them about the key developments in biosciences, especially in biotechnology. Your support will help us in our mission to feed the world with knowledge. You can help by donating as little as $10.
See more articles:
News from Around the World
- Global Pipeline of GM Crops out to 2020
- Growing Demand for Food, Fuel Drives Global Agricultural Biotechnology Market
- Researchers Discover Core Set of Genes for Plant-Fungal Symbiosis
- Draft Lentil Genome Assembly Released
- FDA Approves Second Generation Innate® Potatoes
- Modifying the Structure of Wood Alters Plant Microbiome
- VIB Researchers Discover New Mechanism for Root Development
- Wall-Associated Kinases Participate in Defense Against Rice Blast
- WOX Genes Function in Protoderm and Suspensor Development in Norway Spruce
- The Recessive Allele in the Soybean Maturity Locus E9 Causes Delayed Flowering
Beyond Crop Biotech
- Pioneering Study Helps Fight Against Ash Dieback
- Enhanced Free Fatty Acid Production of Synechocystis sp. by Deletion of the CyAbrB2
- MicroRNA-150 Promotes Cervical Cancer by Targeting FOXO4
- Plant Genes and "Omics": Technology Development
- ISAAA in 2015
Read the latest:
- Biotech Updates (December 7, 2023)
- Gene Editing Supplement (November 29, 2023)
- Gene Drive Supplement (February 22, 2023)
Subscribe to BU: