Crop Biotech Update

Co-Expression of ApGSMT2g and ApDMT2g Enhances Salt Tolerance in Cotton

August 1, 2018

Salinity is a major factor limiting agricultural production worldwide. Glycine betaine (GB) is an osmoprotectant that protects plants from environmental stresses. Jiuling Song, a scientist from Shandong University in China, led a team of researchers to develop transgenic cotton expressing both ApGSMT2g and ApDMT2g via Agrobacterium-mediated transformation.

Expression of both ApGSMT2g and ApDMT2g in cotton resulted in higher salt tolerance and more vigorous plant growth as characterized by higher GB amounts, higher relative water content (RWC), and lower osmotic potential under salt stress compared to wildtypes. Furthermore, co-expressing the two genes led to greater photosynthesis capacity, improvement of plant growth, and increases in cotton seed yield compared to wildtypes under salt stress.

These results indicate that ApGSMT2g and ApDMT2g confer higher salt tolerance and more seed yield to cotton plants under saline conditions.

For more information, read the article in Plant Science.