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Crop Biotech Update

Glyphosate Tolerance in GM Canola by a Modified gox Gene

August 3, 2012

Glyphosate is the most widely used herbicide globally due to its minimal human and environmental toxicity. Application of glyphosate degrading enzyme from bacterium such as glyphosate oxidoreductase (GOX) together with glyphosate tolerant epsps is an effective technique to provide maximum glyphosate tolerance in important crops. Thus, a team of scientists led by Faranak Hadi from the National Institute of Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (NIGEB) in Iran used a synthetic gene encoding GOX enzyme with plant codon preferences.

The team used bioinformatics tools to analyze the structure of the synthetic construct and its mRNA. They subcloned the synthetic gene and transformed it into canola through Agrobacterium mediated transformation to study further the possible functions of the gene in boosting glyphosate tolerance. Analyses confirmed the presence and the expression of the gene in the plant. When exposed to different concentrations of glyphosate, it was shown that the transgenic canola tolerated the herbicide at 1.5 mM concentration while the non-GM plant was unable to survive even at 0.5mM concentration.

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