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Crop Biotech Update

Scientists Show Correlation of Cry1Ac mRNA and Protein Abundance in Biotech Cotton Plant

May 26, 2021

Mazumdar Shaw Medical Centre and Tea Research Institute researchers explored the level of mRNA–protein correlation in a commercial transgenic cotton plant (MON15985). Their findings are published in 3 Biotech journal.

The link between mRNA expression and protein abundance, the end results of transcription and translation, continues to be a puzzle. In the case of transgenic plants, the correlation between mRNA and protein expression is used as a guide in designing the transgene to ensure stable expression of the target protein in specific tissues under different stress conditions. To elucidate this correlation further, the researchers used ELISA to quantify the Cry1Ac protein expression; while the mRNA level was determined using a real-time quantitative PCR assay. Results showed that the protein and mRNA levels are highly correlated in the leaves, but not in squares and stems. The correlations were observed to be consistent between young and mature leaves and intensify as time progresses from the first to the third month of harvest.

The researchers suggest that the transcript level could be used as a substitute for protein abundance for MON15985, especially for leaf tissues, which are most susceptible to pests and pathogens.

For more details, read the research article in 3 Biotech.

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