Biotech Updates

Study Shows Drought Tolerant HB4 Wheat Compositionally Equivalent to Non-GM Wheat

January 23, 2019

Wheat is one of the most economically-important crops grown in wide areas globally. This crop faces drought in many areas, affecting its production. Thus, a drought tolerant wheat would be a desirable alternative for growers to combat water deficit conditions.

A gene (Helianthus annuus homeobox 4 or HaHB4) from sunflower was discovered to confer drought tolerance when introduced to wheat. This led to the development of wheat event IND-ØØ412-7 (HB4® wheat), which displayed higher yield in production environments of low productivity potential. Researchers conducted compositional analysis of the GM wheat, considering 41 nutrients and 2 anti-nutrients in the grain and 10 nutrients in forage. Results showed that HB4 wheat is compositionally equivalent to non-transgenic wheat.

Read the research article in Transgenic Research.