Crop Biotech Update

CRISPR Decreases Carbohydrate Content in Rice

December 14, 2023

Rice glutelins, a family of abundant storage proteins, are encoded by 15 genes and influence seed development. A study published in the International Journal of Molecular Sciences reported about the use CRISPR-Cas9 to suppress subsets of these genes, generating three transgenic rice lines with reduced levels of specific glutelin subfamilies. These lines displayed lower amylose and starch content, higher prolamine content, reduced grain weight, and irregular protein bodies in mature seeds.

Gene expression analysis of immature seeds revealed significant changes in genes related to RNA processing, protein translation, and seed quality traits. This result indicates that rice glutelin genes interact with other genes during development, potentially influencing seed storage protein and starch synthesis through post-transcriptional and translational mechanisms.

Read the research article in the International Journal of Molecular Sciences.

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