Crop Biotech Update

Seed Shattering 11 Controls Seed Shattering in African Rice

January 11, 2023

Scientists from China Agricultural University reported that MYB transcription factor Seed Shattering 11 (SH11) controls seed shattering by repressing lignin synthesis in African rice. The results are published in Plant Biotechnology Journal.

One of the major challenges in African cultivated rice production is seed shattering, which leads to extensive grain losses during harvest. On the other hand, Asian cultivated rice exhibits better resistance to seed shattering, which leads to more grains. Therefore, a better understanding of the regulation of seed shattering would help enhance harvesting efficiency in African cultivated rice.

The researchers conducted map-based cloning and characterization of OgSH11, a MYB transcription factor controlling seed shattering in African rice. They observed that OgSH11 impedes the expression of genes involved in lignin biosynthesis and deposition by binding to the promoter of GH2. They were able to come up with a new Oryza glaberrima material showing significantly decreased seed shattering by knockout of SH11 in O. glaberrima using CRISPR-Cas9.

Identification of SH11 not only supplies a new target for seed-shattering improvement in African cultivated rice, but also provides new insights into the molecular mechanism of abscission layer development.

Read more results in the Plant Biotechnology Journal.

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