Crop Biotech Update

Targetted Editing of Bacterial Leaf Blight Susceptible Gene in Rice

October 20, 2022

A team of researchers at Tamil Nadu Agricultural University, India, used the CRISPR tool for target editing of OsSWEET13, a bacterial leaf blight (BLB) susceptible gene in rice. Their findings are published in the Electronic Journal of Plant Breeding.

BLB causes severe yield losses in all rice-growing regions. The pathogen, Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae (Xoo), produces transcription activator-like effector (TALE) molecules that bind to the effector binding element (EBE) of SWEET gene's promoter to activate the transcription of the said genes and make the plants susceptible to the disease.

The researchers attempted to confer BLB resistance in rice by suppressing TALE-triggered signaling through CRISPR-Cas9. Agrobacterium-mediated transformation led to four independent transformation events. Five plants representing three events exhibited one nucleotide deletion in the target sequence, which could potentially restrict the binding of the corresponding TALE and confer resistance against BLB.

Download the full paper from the Electronic Journal of Plant Breeding.

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